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Five Posts to Inspire You

The last few weeks I’ve been reflecting on how different my outlook is on my finances, compared to what it was five years ago. I’ve really come a long way when it comes to budgeting and saving. As I looked through old bookmarks, I came across some great links that I think will help you if you’re new to frugal finances, because they definitely helped me. So here are five posts, some old, some new, that have made an impact on my finances:

1. YNAB – Dear Account Balance…it’s over.

First off, I am not paid to promote YNAB (excellent budget software that I do use) and although I wouldn’t talk you out of purchasing their product, their blog is available for free and has some great articles. I loved this article on utilizing your budget to make financial decisions instead of using your bank balance. It really drove home the importance of using your budget as a daily tool, not a set-it-and-forget-it tool.

2. Zen Habits – 20 Money Hacks, Tips and Tricks to Improve your Finances

Some tips you may not have seen before on how to save money and stick to a budget. I read this article when it was posted in 2008, and it made such a great impact that I’m still following some of the things I read in it, like the spreadsheet tracker.

3. YNAB – What Does the Ideal Budget Look Like?

Another YNAB post, this is a pretty inclusive article that walks through the importance of a lean budget. I eat up articles about budgets like cake (not a lie). Budgets are the most crucial part of any kind of financial management.

4. Zen Habits – The 10 Key Actions that Finally Got Me Out of Debt

I love voyueristic glimpses into the personal finance of other people who have struggled with debt. This acticle is great inspiration.

5. David Seah – Decision Fatigue and Mental Energy

Forgive me, I’m linking to a David Seah post that links to a NY Times Article, because I want you to read both (but ultimately, I want you to read the NY Times article). This article isn’t about finances, but the concept of decision fatigue is fascinating to me, and believe it or not, actually applies to finances (for me, anyway). Understanding that making decisions when my brain is tired is bad science changed how I manage my finances.

I hope these inspire you!

Oh, and because I feel bad for a picture-less post, here you go.  I say I stick to a strict budget so I can afford a higher quality of booze, but really it’s so I can afford higher quality capes for my dog.

Haters gonna hate.

Michelle 2012

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