that’s it, 2018 kicked off and I am reflecting on the past year events just like everyone else except maybe for one thing: I went for a saving challenge a year ago called: #BSRI (Even though I always want to write this down as “BRSI” I don’t know why).
What could I say that has not already been said about saving 30% of your income?
Oh ! I didn’t buy any shoes…
In fact, I didn’t, but for everything else it was just real day-to-day life with being more careful and reviewing spending versus budget almost every day. I went out, we’ve been eating out with my girlfriend, went to the cinema, traveled by car, by plane once even, paid our rent… I didn’t buy a lot of clothing though, but maybe that was the key to saving a bit more than usual: refraining on piling up on top of already very full shelves with enough T-shirts for the next ten years. Also, no crappy electronic devices were shopped for, except for two new batteries for my phones.
If only I had worked more than spending almost half of the year with a few contract jobs here and there, yes I would have saved more, but again with real-life issues knocking at the door, you tap into the savings as you need them and you just get along fine. I could have saved 40% instead of 30% by just sticking to a regular full-time job.
The challenging part of the saving challenge
there is one thing I wasn’t doing as much before and I did quite obsessively: tracking my expenses.
I guess that is the tool you have to use if you want to achieve your goal, having a comprehensive budget and easy to manage, whether you are using spreadsheets as I do or any other tracking App. And it can be frustrating to see you don’t have much left to spend for the next weekend to come. It was also good to realize month end often became the time when you’ve underspent well enough to actually eat out and do more than you thought without denting your budget.
Would I do this again now?
well… yes, sure it’s a good thing to know what you really need to get by and still have a good time.
A lot of spending decisions if carefully reviewed are based on what we believe is needed or must be done rather than we need and what we want to do. There is also a lot of life priorities that we can redefine by asking ourselves what we really want and what we can do to get the most of the situation we are in, and in most cases, more “things” will just not help at all.
It’s over really?
Truth be told I am also glad it’s over, I will certainly keep saving and investing, but more on my own terms, the world doesn’t need to know 🙂
I also like to look at life from a positive point of view, and there is only so much you can subtract from the things you do for the sake of saving money, it still has to make sense with your lifestyle, or the passion that’s driving you. You can always save more money and do a better budget with a bit of dedication but purpose and meaning won’t come as easy and that’s what you should probably be after just as well.
More figures to come about how I spent in 2017 in a next post