In the Charles Dickens’s novel David Copperfield, Wilkins Micawber drops a gem about financial planning that has stood the test of time. “Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty-pound ought and six, result misery.”
In the quote, Micawber is essentially saying that it’s better to live within your means than to spend more than you earn. If you spend less than you earn, you’ll have money left over to save or invest, which can help you achieve your financial goals. However, if you spend more than you earn, you’ll eventually end up in debt, which can lead to a lot of stress and anxiety.
Micawber’s quote is still relevant today. Many people struggle with their finances, and it’s easy to get caught up in the cycle of debt. However, if you’re willing to create a budget and stick to it, you can avoid the misery of debt and start to build a brighter financial future.
Here are some tips for creating and sticking to a budget:
- Start by tracking your spending. This will help you to see where your money is going and where you can cut back.
- Set realistic goals. Don’t try to cut back too much too soon. Start by making small changes, and gradually increase your savings over time.
- Find ways to save money. There are many ways to save money, such as packing your lunch for work, cooking at home more often, and thinking of creative ways to entertain yourself without stretching your budget.
- Be disciplined. It’s important to be disciplined when it comes to sticking to your budget. This means saying no to impulse purchases and sticking to your spending plan, even when it’s tough.
If you’re struggling to create or stick to a budget, there are many resources available to help you. There are books, websites, and apps that can help you get started.
Remember, budgeting is not a one-time thing. It’s an ongoing process that requires regular review and adjustment. However, if you’re willing to put in the effort, budgeting can help you achieve your financial goals and live a happier, more secure life