makin’ bank challenge: april

I’ve always been a fan of challenges.

The feeling of accomplishing a specific goal that I’ve set for myself is one of my favorite things in the world. That doesn’t only apply to “big” challenges either. I’m notorious for making daily To-Do Lists and I get a little burst of satisfaction every time I get to cross something off. No judgements.

With all of the changes that are happening in my life, gaining control over my finances has become one of my main priorities. In the next few months I’m planning to take over a number of my bills (cell phone, gas, power/electric, etc.) and make more progress in becoming 100% financially independent. It’s a tad overwhelming to think about but I know I can do it and I know that each time I lift a little burden off of my parents shoulders I’ll have accomplished something. So, I’m ready.

Budget1

How am I going to go about doing this, you ask? Well, I’m going to take it month-by-month.

At the start of each month (April being the first) I’ll make a list of specific financial goals and challenges for myself. Then, at the end of those 30 days, I’ll see what I was able to accomplish and create a brand new list based on those results. I’m going to deem April-June my “saving” months. I’m going to focus on bringing in as much income as possible and spending very little that way I’ll have a solid foundation to stand on. And since April will be the kick-off, I’m challenging myself big time.

Makin’ Bank Challenge: April 2013

1.) No Spending Money:

Yes, yes…I know that sounds extreme. I’ll still pay my bills, buy groceries, and buy my necessities (toothpaste, for example) but I’m challenging myself to cut out all the extra spending for 30 days. I’m not going to lie, I have a shopping problem. I’ve gotten much better over the past couple months but I still have a hard time walking into Target or Urban Outfitters and not purchasing makeup or clothes. Considering I have plenty, I know I’m fully capable of going one month without buying more.

2.) Keep Track:

I’m going to keep a small notebook with me throughout the month and write down every single penny that I spend. I’ve attempted this before and failed but I’m determined to stick with it this time around.

3.) Get a 2nd Job:

This is a big one. I absolutely love my current job at the restaurant and I wouldn’t dream of giving it up. But, for the sake of “saving”, I want to have a second income for a while. I’m currently working mostly evening shifts so I’m looking for a morning job (possibly Starbucks?) Fingers crossed!

It’s not going to be easy but, like I said, I’m a sucker for a good challenge. I know that if I really focus on saving I’ll see results in no time. Being financially independent is a huge part of growing up and finding my bliss so it’s time to put on my big girl shoes and make it happen. Who’s with me?

Here’s to wishing that “money trees” existed…

-Emily

28 comments
  1. adashofmeg said:

    BABY! So proud of you 🙂

    Ok, so my Mom told me I had to stop eating out so much because I was spending WAYYYYYY too much hahahahaha, so I have actually been monitoring my spending too and you know what? I really don’t need anything more than what I have already! CRAZY how much I was spending before too – definitely a shopaholic over here, too, my love!

    So, can I join this challenge with you? 😉 I’m definitely NOT spending money either 🙂 Only for things I need, but like stuff I don’t need, I will not buy. And I will put extra thought into those other things I buy, too.

    I looooove your second goal – I’ve never done it before! So, I think I would really like to give it a try! It will make me realize how much money I spend going out for tea…. omg! I will start that April, 1, too.

    I am working on getting A job, so wish me luck!

    Love you

    p.s. good luck on your job hunt, too! I applied to Starbucks, but no call back! So unfortunate.

    • Emily said:

      YAY! I’m so excited that we’re going at this together. Hopefully other people will join in too! I think it’ll be an awesome challenge.

      Good luck on the job hunt, girly! It can be frustrating but stay positive- you’ll find one before you know it!

  2. Sounds like a wise goal/plan for April – do update on how it goes! Best of luck 🙂

    • Emily said:

      Thank you! I’ll definitely keep you guys posted on how it’s going. (:

  3. P said:

    This challenge sounds great and should give you good results in the long run :D.
    I’m actually the opposite when it comes to spending money. I have no problem buying “special” food (like the more expensive “health” foods) from time to time, but I almost have to force myself to buy new clothes nowadays!

    • Emily said:

      Really? That’s awesome! I wish I had your self control. haha. Clothes and makeup are my weakness.

  4. Budgeting and finances were the bane of my existence when I first ventured out on my own, but they’re definitely invaluable to have figured out. Great challenge, girlie!

    Oh, and I’m totally guilty of tilling my to-do list with menial tasks just so I can feel good about crossing them off 😀

    • Emily said:

      Thank you!
      And I do the saaame thing. I also write things on my to-do list that have already been done…just so I can cross them off. No shame. (:

  5. Ellie said:

    I decided to make myself financially independent when I took this year off from school. It is really liberating in that you’re not subject to anyone else’s opinions on how you spend your money. I also do not feel guilty anymore because I’m not living in my parents house or spending their money or using their vehicles. It has created a sense of responsibililty and I think more about what I spend and how to optomize the free food from work. I also leased my own apartment which isn’t big. After the first month when half of my stuff when to the salvation army because I didn’t have room, whenever I want to make an impulse purchase (even if it’s not expensive) I have to ask if I have room for it.

    At first it was hard to limit myself, but I found that when I did save money (and paid off some loans I felt like I was paying forever on) I felt accomplished! It’s like walking into target when they are having a sale and you have a 75% off coupon! DOUBLE AWESOME!

    You’ll do fine, it just takes some adjusting. I highly encourage you to write your goals down though so that you stick to them. Works like a charm 🙂

    • Emily said:

      You seriously give the best advice- THANK YOU. ❤

  6. This sounds like a great challenge! I feel really lucky to have a lot of support from my parents…but I definitely already thinking about when I’m out on my own and have to handle everything. So this post is definitely helpful in getting me thinking and preparing!

    • Emily said:

      You’re definitely VERY lucky to have your parents support. I’m so thankful for everything that my parents have helped me with over the years. I know they’d continue to help me if I asked but I feel like it’s time to start taking on more responsibility. Scary but necessary!
      I’m glad this was helpful!

  7. ahh good luck! it’s so hard for me since I have loans and stuff. esp because I don’t wanna miss out on the fun too. I’m trying but it’s hard.

    • Emily said:

      Thank you!
      I know, it’s suuuper tough. I have a hard time turning down opportunities to go out with friends (which happen a lot!) but the expense adds up really quickly!

      • agreed. I’m down to spending probably 20 a week to hang out with friends but I mean that’s still too much haha

  8. I would love to join in on this challenge! I have the same problem when it comes to spending money on non-essentials. My money goes so fast when I spend it on clothes and beauty products so I really need to get that under control. I’m still relying on my parents to pay for my car and my groceries when I’m at home but paying for my own rent and utilities and groceries this year has really taught me how to budget!

    • Emily said:

      Ahh YAY! Please join me! It’ll make it so much easier if we have each other for support. haha.
      I’m in the exact same position as you- my parents still pay for my car and part of my rent but everything else is up to me. Growing up is serious business!

  9. Sounds like a very realistic plan! I still live at home so I don’t have to worry about rent/food/electric bills thankfully, but I do pay for my gas and anything “fun” things I want. Last April I gave up Starbucks for the whole month and I really think it did help me save quite a bit. I don’t think I want to do that again (no shame) but I did set a $25 monthly budget for Starbucks so I can still enjoy it and not go overboard. Also, I’ve always wanted to work at a coffee shop! It sounds like so much fun. Good luck!!

    • Emily said:

      Setting a Starbucks budget is such a good idea! I can’t fathom the idea of giving it up completely- I did that for lent last year and almost died… #coffeeaddictprobs

  10. Lisa said:

    Sounds like a great plan for you! I definitely should be adopting more money saving techniques. I’m alright at it, but I could certainly be doing a better job. Maybe I’ll have to attempt something like this myself.

    • Emily said:

      Thank you! Let me know if you do. (:

  11. I love this! I have been trying to slowly become more self-aware on my spending habits in hopes to get myself on a serious budget soon. I agree, keeping track of ALL your spending is SO beneficial because you can see you spending in perspective. I did it for 1 month then sadly let it slip through the cracks, but I April 1st is coming up soon, and I think I am going to try that one again 🙂 Good Luck Emily!

    • Emily said:

      Ooooh! Keep me posted if you try it again.
      Thank you! (:

  12. Pingback: April Goals & MMAZ

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