We are immersed in a spending buffet of abundant temptation and easy credit. Advertisers and lenders are trained and skilled at getting us to spend our hard-earned money the way they want.
Most of us weren’t taught how to make good money decisions in that environment, and it doesn’t come naturally. So it’s no surprise that many of us struggle.
To break those habits and afford a life that lights us up we need a budgeting system with these three key elements:
- Priorities – Where to spend your money for the most meaning and joy, informed by social science.
- Plan – A guide of how much you can afford to spend on your priorities.
- Process – How to stick to the plan with minimal reliance on willpower.
Without a plan of what’s affordable, we can end up overspending on our priorities, which can mean we miss out on other experiences that also matter.
Without a process, we can very easily get off track, especially since the forces of our consumer-culture are designed to pull us that way.
Without a sense of the purpose of money in our lives, we can end up charging down a pathway of earning and spending that turns out to be unfulfilling.
What’s money for?
Much has been published about the plan and process elements of a budgeting system, but less about the priorities.
In this podcast episode, I introduce a framework of a quality life that lights you up, which can be our guide.