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Here’s the cold hard truth about budgeting as an ADHD woman.
We don’t want to. If we don’t have to. If we can always pay our bills, why would we?
But here’s a fact we are avoiding: Without budgeting, saving and doing things with our future in mind, we will have no future.
We cannot work forever, even though some of us swear we can.
And heaven forbid tragedy strike us, and we have no choice but to stop working altogether.
I get it, as an ADHD woman I live in the now and not now context of my life. And a budget does not sound fun, or exciting or worthwhile.
Oh, but it is.
And it doesn’t have to be super complicated.
Here are 7 Ways to begin budgeting your money better today as an ADHD woman:
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1. Stop using a Debit Card.
No, I’m not Dave Ramsay. And I know your friends all use cards, and they manage their money fine, so why not you? Because we aren’t them. As a woman with ADHD who needs to budget swiping a card to your budget is midnight snacks to your healthy eating habits. It’s not good. It’s blind spending. Whether the total you are paying for is $50 or $500, you don’t physically see it leave your account, you swipe, and it’s gone. Think of spending cash like allowing your brain to make a better mental note of your budget. You can still have a checking account, and perhaps have a debit card but stop using it for your everyday expenses.
2. Grab my Budget Breakdown and Guide in the Resource Library
It’s simple. It’s efficient, and it won’t overwhelm you with categories, and flow charts. It’s just a spreadsheet to write it down and a guide on why and how to use it. (Sign Up At the Bottom of This Post!)
3. Only use a Bank or Credit Union Credit Card with a Low Credit Balance.
If your only credit card allows you to spend $1000, it can help you stay in check. Try to pay it off each month, but I know how hard that can be as an ADHD woman without a budget. If you can’t pay it off, you’ll still have peace of mind knowing that spending $1000 isn’t that bad. Any non-ADHD person will be shocked to find out that your revolving credit line can quickly become maxed out. But that’s why you need to put physical limits in place so even if it does, you’re not burdened with a $5000 debt that you can’t possibly pay back.
If you’re smarter than the average bear, only get a secured card. You put the amount of money down that you want to have on a revolving line, and if your card becomes a charge off, it’s insurance for the bank. They’ll take the money you gave them, pay off the card and close it for you. You can also do this if you can’t get approved for a regular credit card.
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4. Get rid of your ATM card
If you are spending cash only and trying to stick to your own allowance having an ATM card that allows you to go get more money out anytime you need it will be to your detriment. Trust me. Get rid of it. Use the tellers at your bank, it makes it more difficult to go get the money you want to blow on stupid things.
5. If you struggle to save, try to split your Direct Deposit check.
At a Job I used to have, I had the option to direct deposit my check into two accounts. I could set the designated amount out of each earnings check that I wanted to go to which. It allowed me to put $20 away into a Christmas club account I had at a Credit Union I never frequented and forgot that it was there. If you can find a way to save and forget you saved, you can probably get ahead on your budget regardless of having ADHD.
6. Set reminders for Bills in your Phone.
Or On Your fridge. Wherever they will be most visible to you. And set the reminder a week ahead.
When it comes to budgeting as an ADHD woman can easily be derailed by simply forgetting what bills are due and when. If on the 30th you have to pay your car payment, set a reminder for that bill 1-2 pay periods before it. If you get paid on Fridays and the bill is due the following Wednesday, set the reminder for the previous two Fridays. This way, you can budget for it while you have the money rather than spend your entire paycheck over the weekend, and then come Wednesday be “shocked to remember your car payment was due!”
7. Get an Accountability Partner:
If your spouse is always harping on you about your spending habits, and you can’t handle that kind of criticism, ask a third party trusted friend to help you. Tell them your weaknesses. Ask them to call you on your commute to work, so you aren’t tempted to drive through Starbucks every day. Ask if when you get the itch to get out of the house and spend money on “doing something” if you can just come to their place and hang out. They don’t have to know how much you’re spending all the time, but they can be your safety net when you are tempted to dip into the money you don’t need to spend. A distraction so to speak.