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#3 Discuss it. This meeting will look different depending on whether you are married or whether you are single.
If you are married I do not recommend both spouses sitting in front of the computer screen creating the budget at the same time (that may increase the likely hood of receive marriage counseling – note the sarcasm here). It would be best to pick the spouse that already has a knack for this type of thing to create the budget. Then once the budget is created then have your budget committee meeting. This is where both of you can review your budget together and make sure you agree on what you are spending, saving, etc. As a part of this meeting (for the spouse that did not create the budget), this is where you can voice your opinion on how this month’s budget should look like. If you know you need to buy some tires, then we need to add that to the budget. Remember though, if you add an expense, that means you have to decrease your overall expense to match what was raised.
The number one cause for divorce in America is money problems (which really is a lack of communication). When doing a budget this way, this creates an environment where as a couple you can share your hopes, dreams and fears when it comes to money. As speaker Jolene Brown states, “without communication, cooperation and commitment you can count on resistance, resentment and revenge.”
If you are single, I highly recommend finding someone to be your accountability partner to this budgeting process. Your accountability partner needs to be someone that can be your biggest cheerleader, but also remind you of your goals if you want to go and do something that may not be very wise. This accountability partner can be a friend, relative, pastor, counselor, etc.