I had my money well accounted for to take me through for two weeks. Then I met a shoe, a trouser, skirt of my liking and then that accounting discipline was washed away by my impulse buying. Came 1 and a half week and the difference between me and a church mouse was the term POOR. In fact the only coin left on my wallet was transport money to take me to and fro to my destination. How the next day journey would be, only my head knew best from the vigorous thinking and scratching I had made it to. This was not a one-time thing but it had occurred to me on several occasions
Accounting for money requires one major SELF-DISCIPLINE. After realizing that I needed to grow up and not squander money aimlessly I came up with a practical plan.
- Piggy bank- this is not that pink pig that kids are excited to drop a coin they receive but I needed my own custom made “piggy bank”. One of my girlfriends asked me what I did with the balance I got from buying things. To me that change was a bonus to buy airtime, sweets,a snack or top up to the rest of the money. Then she told me to be keeping it separately from the rest of the money and all my balances would go there. So I improvised a “balance wallet” that would not be touched till maybe end of the month or when I was really broke. I tried it and to my utter surprise that has been one saving method right there.
- Fixed savings bank account – you don’t need to be earning a lot of money but that little savings in a day can be deposited in your bank account that of course limits your withdrawal rates and on the other hand earns you interest.
- Close my eyes and block my ears – temptations are everywhere and the hunger cannot be satisfied unless you buy or eat that thing you like. So whenever I bump into something and someone says it’s my type or it would look good on me I just assume I didn’t hear or see it. I only buy necessities and luxury things will have to wait until am earning real good or when it’s that time to pamper myself.
- Mobile banking – the gadgets we carry around are a useful tool especially the M-shwari in the MPesa in my country that is. Upon receiving money and you have no idea on its usage just take it to the M-shwari account. At least it’s safer there plus the more you save, the more your loan borrowing rates increases.
- No loan – have you ever borrowed money as little as it is and after it’s over you wonder why you borrowed it in the first place? That is because it did not benefit you and instead it ended up satisfying your ego rather than handling constructive issues. Well, never ever borrow unless it’s EMERGENCY.
- Tag my money – I once saw it in a movie and I do not know how applicable this may be. So you see when you have all your money at the table and take different envelopes let’s say each bearing a name of the things you want to do. E.g. envelope 1 write bills, 2 food, 3 clothes etc. then on each envelope you allocate a certain amount before saving the rest. Take note that if the entertainment one runs down, you are not allowed to go to the bills one to top up. At the end of the month you are able to account on your spending habits and cut down on it. (that can work, right?)
- Chama – let me enlighten you, you digitized, proud folks who think that been in the so called “wamama” /women savings group is old fashioned. Am not talking about the merry-go-round groups where you have to wait until the calendar tires from been turned due to the big number of people in it; and at the end of it all maybe paying debts and family expenses is the best thing that can ever happen from it. No. Am talking of those chamas where you save up to buy a portion of land somewhere and build apartments or resell it, those where you start businesses, those that you shall learn from and see the world from a different angle. BIG investments. Doesn’t necessarily have to be a women group but even workmates or youth mates who share same sentiments as you to avoid its end before it starts. (Am searching for one or start one)
That is my nitty gritty on my money handling. What about you, how are you handling it?