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Had a Budget Slip-Up? Here's How to Get Back on Track | Ep. 313
Episode 3132nd April 2024 • Money Talk With Tiff • Tiffany Grant
00:00:00 00:13:38

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In this episode of Money Talk with Tiff, Tiffany Grant responds to a listener's question on recovering from a budget setback. Tiffany shares personal experiences and practical steps to help listeners get back on track when facing unexpected expenses or drifting from their financial plans.

From reflecting on the reasons behind the budget slip to embracing flexibility and forgiveness, Tiffany offers valuable insights and tips for creating a resilient budget recovery plan. Tune in to gain expert advice on budget reassessment, emergency fund building, and the importance of regular financial reviews. Plus, discover how to avoid future detours through mindful spending and continuous financial education.

Join Tiffany as she takes you on a journey to financial recovery, empowering you to navigate your money matters with confidence and clarity.

Every Tuesday, Tiffany answers one of your submitted questions. To submit a question for an upcoming episode, visit here: https://www.moneytalkwitht.com/asktiffany

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Website: https://www.moneytalkwitht.com

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Timestamps

[00:00] Understand why budget strayed, adapt for resilience.

[04:35] Review budget, cut expenses, increase income options.

[08:09] Have an emergency fund in high-yield savings.

[11:37] Stay present, be grateful, and move forward.

Key Themes

  • Budget Recovery: Steps to get back on track.
  • Reflect and Understand: Identifying reasons for budget deviation.
  • Reassess Your Budget: Review income, expenses, and goals.
  • Implement a Recovery Plan: Adjusting expenses, increasing income, and being realistic.
  • Build an Emergency Fund: Creating a financial safety net.
  • Embrace Flexibility and Forgiveness: Being adaptable and practicing self-compassion.
  • Review and Adjust Regularly: Keeping track and celebrating progress.

Additional Links & Resources

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Copyright 2024 Tiffany Grant



This podcast uses the following third-party services for analysis:

Chartable - https://chartable.com/privacy

Transcripts

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You know what it is. That's right. It's time to talk money with your money

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nerd and financial coach. Now tighten those purse strings

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and open those ears. It's the money talk with Tiff

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podcast. Hey,

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everyone, and welcome to another episode of Tiffany's Take, where I answer

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your money questions right here on the podcast. If you would like your question answered,

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just go to www.moneytalkwitht.com

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axtiffany, and I'll be more than happy to answer for you. So for

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today's episode, someone sent in a question and said, help. I

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got off track with my budget. How can I recover now? I wanted

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to cover this question at this time because it's the first

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of the month, and so this is the perfect time to restart. If

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you ever get off track. Now, even if it's not the first of the month,

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it's fine. You can pretty much restart at any

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time. But I do usually personally

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take those opportunities when it's the first to recalibrate

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if I need to. And we've all been there. You know, one day you're tracking

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every penny, and before you know it, life throws you a curveball. You have a

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surprise expense, a spontaneous purchase, or just the everyday

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drift from your laid out plans. It's completely normal. And the

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good news is, getting back on track is entirely within your

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reach. So let's go ahead and hop right into

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it. I know personally, I've restarted my budget multiple times.

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And honestly, one of the things that gets me off track is when I get

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a windfall, because I was like, ooh,

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money. And I want to do this and I want to do that and I

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want to do this. I do plan out what I want to do with the

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money. But then after I take care of everything

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that I planned out, then sometimes I start drifting in my

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spending instead of sticking to the basics, the budget. So,

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anywho, that brings me into my first step, which is to

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reflect and understand. So first things first. Just take a deep

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breath. Give yourself a little grace. It happens all the

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time, and they can happen for a myriad of reasons.

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Understand why you strayed away from your budget, like, what

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caused these unexpected expenses. So ask yourself a couple of

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questions. Was it an impulsive decision, or did an

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unforeseen event throw you off course? And ask yourself,

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have your priorities or circumstances changed in a way that requires

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adjusting to your budget? Because that's another thing that happens, too.

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Sometimes people get off track with their budget, but it's because they never updated it

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to their current life situation. And so they're using an old budget

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to live their new life. Understanding the why

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equips you with the insight to create a more resilient plan moving

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forward. So you definitely want to take this step

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seriously and really be real with yourself. Why did I get off

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track? Step two, reassess your budget so now's

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the time to sit down with your budget. If you don't have one, that's

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okay. This is the perfect moment to start. Your budget should be a

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reflection of your current financial situation and your priorities. So

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consider any changes in your income, expenses, or goal. So first things

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first. List your income sources. Know exactly what's coming in

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to track your expenses, so categorize them into essentials

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and non essentials. I have a whole blog article on how

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to craft a budget, and I'll make sure I'll put that link in the show

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notes. And then also make sure you're setting real less real.

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And then also make sure that you're setting realistic goals.

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So think about short term savings and then

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also think about long term saving. And I

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have a playlist for goal setting that I

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made with different podcast episodes. I'll make sure I put that in the

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show notes as well. So if you need help with the goal setting

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piece, definitely check out that playlist. So remember that

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a budget isn't a set of chains, but rather a roadmap to

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financial freedom. I tell my audience all the time, think of your budget

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as giving you permission to do the things that you want to do, not

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restricting you. Because if anybody has dieted

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like me, then you know that if you try to restrict

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yourself, you are not going to stick to it. So think of it as giving

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you permission to live your best life. And that's how I look at it, and

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it has been working awesome for me. So

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next you want to do step three, which is implement a

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recovery plan. So with your updated budget outline, a

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recovery plan. This might include cutting unnecessary expenses.

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So maybe temporarily reduce your non essential spending. If you feel like you're

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barely making or you want to move that money to another category, you can

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start cutting out unnecessary expenses. One thing that I do every month

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is a subscription audit. I'm actually probably going to do it today since we're at

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the first of the month. But figure out what is it that I'm paying for

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that I don't use, so that way I can start cutting those

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expenses. Because the reason why everything has a

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subscription is because people forget to cancel it. And so the companies

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make a ton of money just on uncanceled

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subscriptions, so make sure you put that in as a practice

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so that way you're not missing out on some of your money. Another thing you

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can do is increase your income, so maybe consider some side gigs,

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selling some unused items, asking for a raise. All of these things

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are really effective in developing a recovery plan if you

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get off track. Also, you might want to

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think about adjusting your savings contributions, so if you're doing

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really good, maybe you want to increase it. If you're not doing so well, maybe

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you want to decrease it and it's okay. Keep in mind that a

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budget is a living, breathing document, and so it

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can change at any time based on your circumstances.

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So always, always, always keep

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track. Keep looking at it and making sure that you're on

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track for what you're trying to accomplish in that month. Also, I

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highly recommend maybe utilizing budgeting tools or apps.

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Technology can be a great ally in tracking your spending in progress.

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I use apps for pretty much everything in my

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life. That's how I'm able to function. And one

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budgeting app that I highly recommend is ynab. I'll make sure

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I put a link in the show notes for that as well. You need a

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budget, and I like it because if you're in this situation

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where you get off track, they have a whole, like, you just have to click

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a button and it helps you walk through the

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process of restarting. So in ynab, since I've been using

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it for the past year or so, no, maybe about two

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years, I've restarted my budget like three times. And

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it's okay. Their feature is called fresh start. So you

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can just click the fresh start button and it'll archive what

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you've done previously, and it'll make a new budget with all your information

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already pre filled from your old budget, but making

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it so you can start over. So highly recommend ynab. Definitely check

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it out. Step four, build an emergency fund.

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So if you realize in step one that it was

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unexpected expenses that you off track, consider building an emergency

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fund to provide that safety net for you. So that way you won't be in

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that situation again. So start small, even if it's just a tiny

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percentage of your income or a set dollar amount each month. And then over

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time, aim for about three to six months worth of living expenses

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so that way you won't have to keep getting off track if something

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comes up. You have something there for you now. For me, like

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when I hear people saying, oh, when you have money in a savings

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account, you know, you're not making any money on it. You need to

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invest it, blah, blah, blah. But I think they lose track or

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lose sight of what a emergency fund or Runway fund or

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savings account is really there for. It's there for

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liquidity. If you invest your money,

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you don't have that liquidity. You know, you still have to sell your

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investments, you still have to wait for your withdrawal. You know, all of these

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different things. When you have a dedicated emergency fund

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or savings account, then you can pull that money whenever. You don't have to

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go through any extra steps, and it provides that safety net for you.

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So that's why I tell people you should

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always have some type of safety net that is not

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invested and that can look like an emergency fund. Now,

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I use Ally bank for mine. I love them.

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They have the buckets feature where you can put different amounts

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in different buckets for different things, but it's all in one, one account.

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And then also, like at Ally bank, you

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want to look for a high yield savings account so that way you can get

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just more bang for your buck if the money is just going to sit there.

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When you look at the brick and mortar banks, they're only offering less than

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1%. When you look at the high yield savings accounts that are

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available on online banks, they're offering four or 5%.

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So definitely want to check those out. Step

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five, embrace flexibility and forgiveness. So realize

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that life is unpredictable and your budget should be flexible enough to

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accommodate minor detours without derailing your financial well being.

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So practice forgiveness. Berating yourself over mistakes

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only add stress, not solutions. We've talked multiple times on

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the podcast about negative autopilot and how that

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physiologically messes with your brain

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and doesn't allow you to think creatively. So make

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sure that. That you are not, you know, going down the negative

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autopilot route, you're staying positive. You're like,

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okay, I overspent. Cool, what are we doing to move

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forward? So give yourself grace. Practice

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forgiveness. It happens all the time, even me.

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Okay. And then step six, review

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and adjust regularly. So make a habit of reviewing your budget and

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financial goals regularly. At least once a month, y'all. But,

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for instance, I do. I reconcile my budget once a day, and

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I'm in my budget it every day to make sure that I'm tracking everything.

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But if you don't want to do all that at least once a month, have

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your money date. That's what I call it. So whether it's with a significant other

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or just by yourself, because, you know, when we single we take ourselves out,

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too. So just make sure that you have your money date. This not only helps

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you stay on track, but also allows you to adjust as your

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circumstances change. So celebrate the milestones, no matter how

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small, they're proof of your progress. I

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I know when I was starting out, I was grateful that I was

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able to save $25 in my retirement account, and I

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celebrated that because I'm like, oh, it's been a long time coming, you know, a

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month. So I was able to save $25 a month in my retirement

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account. Definitely celebrate all those minor

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victories because it allows you to keep that momentum and

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keep you in that positive state of mind. So how do you avoid

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future detours? Of course. Mindful spending. Before

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making a purchase, ask yourself if it aligns with your goals. If it's an online

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purchase, I leave stuff in my cart, you know, at least 24

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hours. Make sure I really want it. Start implementing things like

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that. An emergency fund, we've already talked about that. But continue

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building this fund to cushion against unforeseen expenses and then

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financial education. That's why you're here. So the more you learn, the better equipped you'll

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be to make informed decisions, to get new ideas and make

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different moves with your money. So with all of that

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being said, slipping up is part of the journey. So don't feel bad. It

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happens to all of us. Just take it in stride. Use these

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steps to get back on track and move forward. That's the only thing

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you can do. I was just having a conversation with someone over the

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weekend and I was like, you know, we stress ourselves out because we're

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either worrying about the past or worrying about the future. So keep

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yourself in the present so that way you can enjoy the moment.

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Be grateful for everything that you have. So with all of

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that being said, if you want your question answered on the podcast, go

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to www.moneytalkwitht.com x

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tiffany and I'll be more than happy to answer for you. So

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until next time, be sure to check out the show notes because I'll have

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links to more resources there and everything that I mentioned in the episode.

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And also, please don't forget to rate, subscribe,

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review all those good things so other people can find this

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podcast as well. If you found it helpful, I would love to hear

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from you. Definitely go to the website

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moneytalkwitht.com and you'll see a contact

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us. Please reach out to me. I answer pretty much all

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of my emails that I get in, except if it's spam. Don't spam me all,

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but I answer all of my listener emails. So I would love to

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hear from you even if you just like oh, I really like this episode. This

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was my favorite. It allows me to make more episodes like that.

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So thank you so much for listening and I hope you enjoy the rest of

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your Tuesday. Bye. Thank you for

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listening, joining and being a part of the Money talk with TIFF podcast this

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week. You can check Tiff out every Thursday for a new Money talk

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podcast, but if you just can't wait until next week, you can listen

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to previous podcast

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episodes@moneytalkwitht.com or

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follow TIFF on all social media platforms at

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moneytalkwitht. Until next time, spend wise

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by spending less than you make a word to the money wise is

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always sufficient.

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