The Money Challenge…

It’s already the 12th of the month this side of the world and I have yet to decide what money challenge I would take for this year.

Last year, I attempted to do the 52-Week Money Challenge that was trending the cyber world. I used my son’s bank account to keep the savings and I also kept a spreadsheet to track down how much I was able to save. I started out with a base amount of Php 50 but I didn’t stick to the dictated amount to be saved per week. Every payday, I would deposit my extra cash and add it into the “pot”. By week 15, I already have an amount equivalent to a week-42 target savings. 😀 I was giddy and was really motivated to save more because I was already thinking that I would have at least double the targeted amount by the end of the year.

Unfortunately, I was not able to complete the challenge because of several unexpected turn of events wherein I needed the funds and the extra cash I was planning to save. The big expenses that really put a dent in my cash flow is when I had to find a new place. My new apartment now is a bit more expensive than the last one, but during the time that I decided to get this place, I made a short computation of my expenses and thought that I have extra for the additional cost of the place.

However, come June time, I hired a nanny for my little Z which we got from an agency and the monthly cost was a bit higher than what I have anticipated. Since the nanny is already a need (because my Mom and my sister are working, too), I made some adjustments in my budget plan. Then about two months after that, little Z’s therapy sessions started as well which was an additional expense. On top of that, I had utilities to pay, groceries including milk and diapers to buy and daily transportation expenses.

I was not able to refund the savings that I was able to use to cover for majority of the big expenses but at some point, I don’t really regret it because I know that I was able to use it for a cause. It was because of that savings that I was able to get a lease on a new place, it was because of that savings that I was able to hire a nanny and it was because of that savings that I was able to pay for Z’s confinements and other doctors’ appointments. The only thing I regret probably would be not being able to finish the end of the challenge.

Since I started working, no, let me rephrase that, since I started realizing that I needed to be mindful of my spending, it has been my practice to treat every new year as a blank page on a budget plan. I create a goal for end of the year or even what I wanted to spend on within the year and incorporate it in my yearly budget plan. Yes, I have a yearly budget plan. I don’t write it down though (maybe I should now) but it usually contains ideas of things that I wanted to buy for myself or trips that I wanted to take within the year. I set loose target dates as well and adjust my budget accordingly.

As of this time, I am thinking of doing the same money challenge but I would have to decide on my base amount first. At the same time, I am still trying to find other money challenge that I can do this year. But first things first, I need to list down the needs and the wants and anticipated expenses within the year so I can work on my budgeting properly. I also have to take into consideration the earnings that I will get from my baked goodies. It’s not a regular thing for now, but who knows, it might turn out to be something that I could really earn from.

I really have to start thinking of these things because, a few of years from now, my son would start school. And if I really wanted to push through with my plans, I would need to have a big capital to fund his schooling. Hopefully my other investments would mature by then. That will really be a big help in the future.

Do you know any other money challenge that I can try? It’s still the start of the year so there is still time to catch up. 🙂

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