You’ve probably googled “budgeting for beginners ” or “budgeting tips” a million times. Maybe even actually created a budget and had every intention of keeping it but it just seems like everything gets in the way, right? Maybe even accumulated a couple of overdraft fees?
Trust me, I feel your pain and struggled with that exact same thing myself. A couple of years ago I was frustrated and embarrassed that I already knew how to create a budget but I kept on screwing up on the budget anyways. It certainly wasn’t for a lack of effort to fix it (trust me, I tried everything!). I seriously wanted to pull out my hair!
This is my reenactment of what I looked like when I messed up on my budget and looked at my account.
That was until I started doing some extensive research about the understanding of the psychology behind decisions. It was such a relief that you can change your financial patterns by simply understanding yourself better and adjusting for your weaknesses after you pinpoint what exactly that is. Here is my actual snap shot of my bank account of when I implemented these strategies. I couldn’t believe how consistent I was being (and trust me consistency is not a natural strong suit of mine)!
This is exactly why I have decided to dedicate my life to helping other people just like you with their finances and why I created created my budgeting system called The Money Psychology Approach. But first here are some tips to take away:
1. Understand Your personality type
(If you don’t know yours, I highly recommend you take the free test at www.16personalities.com)
Self-awareness is vital to your financial success. Your personality type processes information in very a specific way that affect how you are naturally inclined to process and make decisions. It’s important to understand the breakdown of your mental process which in psychology terms is called the cognitive function stack.
Dominant function: This is the strongest and most natural function.
Auxiliary function: This is the second strongest function; it acts as a supporting function to the Dominant function.
Tertiary function: This is the third function that is developed later on in life. This function is typically in your early thirties.
Inferior function: This is typically the weakest and last used function the decision making process. This function is typically developed in your forties.
In my budgeting system, The Money Psychology Approach, I go deep into each of the 16 personality types and their natural inclination to make decisions (financial decisions are no exception) and their cognitive functions stack (how each person makes processes information and subsequently makes those decisions).
Let me give you an example of my personality type. I’m an ENFP (Extroverted, iNtuitive, Feeler, Perceiver). Below you’ll find my cognitive function stack.
You’re probably wondering, okay so what does this actually mean? I’m so glad you asked. So you see the four blocks? These represent how I’m naturally inclined to make decisions and how well developed these functions are from greatest (biggest block) to least (smallest block).
Primary Cognitive Function (Extroverted iNutition): This is my best developed function and primary go to when I’m trying to make a financial decision. This basically means that I look to my external environments to help me try to solve the problem I’m having.
For example: let’s say that I have overspent on my budget one month and I need to make extra money for that month, I’m actually pretty good at finding different side hustles to generate income and fairly quickly so that I don’t accumulate late/overdraft fees.
Inferior Cognitive Function (iNtroverted Sensing): This is my least developed cognitive function. iNtroverted Sensing is where you base your decisions off of previously stored knowledge. ENFPs (and I’m no exception) tend to take very little into account of our previously learned knowledge. In terms of finances this can be incredibly detrimental to your financial health and needs to be guarded against.
For example: A major struggle of mine is not remembering specific due dates (previously stored information/introverted sensing function) or specific money saving goals throughout the month and subsequently caused major overdraft fees when they actually came out of my account. After recognizing the pattern of my weakest decision making process, I decided to guard against that throughout the month so I couldn’t have a chance to forget it (despite that being my least developed cognitive function).
Want more in depth knowledge of how this could relate to you? Get this budgeting system 🙂 What’s a couple of Starbucks trips to permanently change your financial behavior for the better?
2. Set Specific Money Goal Reminders and in Strategic Places
A study by the American Psychological Association showed that those who wrote down specific goals are the ones that actually achieved their goals in the end. In my eBook, I go a step further by stating that you should put your money goal reminders to in 6 of your highest traffic areas of where you know you are going to spend money. Which can be found in the workbook section of my eBook The Money Psychology Approach. [*Hint hint* Get my eBook! It only costs you a couple of Starbucks coffees. 🙂 ]
*Side note*, one of my favorite side hustles is being a driver for Lyft (yes as a female). Its such an easy way to make a quick buck and you can get payouts instantly after you earn the money (well for a 50 cents fee if you need it quickly but that’s still not bad at all)!
For example: In my wallet where my debit card is that’s shown above (where I know I’m about to have access to spend money), I have a money making and money savings goal posted there so I know there is no way to forget my goals throughout the month.
3. Find Side Hustles that Fit your Personality Type
So, you might start to recognize a trend that I talk about personality type a lot. Which is definitely true. That’s because it is so spot on to how you life your life. Given the fact that the average adult spends so much time working (literally 50+hours a week, it’s actually insane how much the average American works), why not do something that you’d enjoy and be good at? Even in a side hustle.
In my eBook, The Money Psychology Approach, I have an entire section dedicated to just that. I lay out side hustles tailored specifically to each personality type that they would not only enjoy but it doesn’t quite feel like work.
4. Start a Monthly Money Reflections Time
Okay so it may sound a little “woo-woo” or pyscho-babble but it’s pyscho-babble that works! When you’re trying to change a habit, there is a refining process that you go through mentally. In my budgeting system, The Money Psychology Approach, there is a workbook section where I ask a series of questions relating to your money habits.
For example: Every personality type has different types of events that trigger chronic stress. Oftentimes, that can lead to stress spending. When you went over budget what was going on at the time? How does it relate to your personality type? Is there a way that you can mimize or elimate that occurance?
5. Get into a Great Community
I have come to find that some of the highest quality of communities that I’ve been in is where I paid a small fee to be in the group. That way you know everyone that is there is there for a specific purpose. There’s also no shame in bringing up what your going through or being afraid to ask a “stupid” question because everyone is either going through that too (and needs to hear the answer) or they have recently found a solution to the question you’re looking for and wants to share it.
Again, I feel the need to really stress that my budgeting system, The Money Psychology Approach, has that access to that very community, A Facebook Community! You know everyone has FB on their phones and you get notifications all the times of groups that your in so you can ask a question and get an answer within minutes! How cool is that?!?
All in all, I highly recommend that you get The Money Psychology Approach. Its a low cost method for you to permanently change your financial behavior for the better! Just because you have struggled with your budget in one way doesn’t mean you have to permanently stay that way forever. You can change it!