Guess What? Budgeting Doesn’t Have to Be a Drag!

Published on January 26, 2022

If you’re anything like most people, simply hearing the word ‘budget’ can make your heart beat faster and cause you to break out in a cold sweat thinking of the times you’ve been unable to meet targets or seeing spreadsheets filled with reminders of your debt. But setting up a budget really can be beneficial in the long run, and there are, thankfully, a number of simple and even fun ways to make setting and sticking to a budget less of a drag.


One of the best ways to stick to a budget and meet financial goals is to make a game out of it. Many personal finance apps actually do this for you, but you can also go the DIY route – like giving yourself a sticker every time you ‘save X amount’ or ‘resist buying Y’. Earn enough points, and you get a reward. Budget gamification options are plentiful, and getting family and friends involved is a great way to keep accountable while still having fun.

Budget calendar

Setting up a calendar budget is another great way to take the stress out of budgeting. Again, many personal finance apps offer this option, but even setting up your own digital or printout version is possible. Essentially, this calendar is dedicated to highlighting when exactly certain payments need to be made (or when you can expect them to be automatically deducted), and when you can expect (different streams of) income to enter your account. This can help you keep better track of your income and expenses and avoid having to pay penalties or overdraft fees. Saving on these kinds of unnecessary charges can do wonders for increasing your savings over time, especially if you calculate what you would have lost and then put this in an investment plan or towards paying off your debt.

Slay the debt dragon

The main reason why people often get stressed about budgeting is that seeing their amounts of income, expenses, and debt all laid out each month can be overwhelming. And it can be especially daunting to view debt when it outweighs your income. However, rather than seeing budgeting as a means of reminding you of how much debt you’re in, it can help to see it as a map to the dragon’s lair. In other words, setting a budget that specifically sets aside a monthly amount dedicated to paying off your debt can help you see that debt shrink rather than grow each month. This is particularly true if you purposefully pay back more each month than the minimum required payments. The more you see the dragon of debt diminish in size, the more motivated you’ll be to continue on your budgeting journey.

Budgeting really doesn’t have to be draining, stressful, or difficult, and you definitely don’t need to get a knot in your stomach every time bills come knocking. The key is, simply, to reframe your perception and make use of tools that can make both budget setting and budget adherence easier.

Business Editor