With social media accessible with the tap of a finger, we see everyone “living their best life” on a daily basis. They take glamorous vacations, have the nicest homes, and eat at the trendiest restaurants.
In moments of not feeling content, it is easy to think that spending our money on “more” or “better” is the answer to feeling fulfilled. I know in the past, I have tried to find fulfillment in new clothes or spending money that I really wanted to save. I wanted to “be better with money” until it actually came down to the wire and I had to make that choice of whether to save or spend.
Throughout my financial and spiritual journey, I have realized that more more more is not what fulfills me; that contentment is a state of mind; and that trips are fun, but it is how I feel on those trips that is what makes me feel fulfilled (not necessarily where I am or what we’re doing).
Once I realized this, I was able to shift my idea of feeling fulfilled from something that I needed to spend more money on to something honors my budget and brings me true joy.
Today, the way I budget and my WHY for budgeting is rooted in what I (we – Marco and I) value. We create our budget based on what’s important to us. We keep expenses low in areas we know don’t actually bring us lasting happiness and give more to the areas that bring us true joy. For example, we spend less on clothes, more on camping. What’s great about budgeting is that it gets to be 100% personal to YOU.
Here are some ideas that I implement in my life that are fun but honor our budget each month! (I’d love to hear your ideas as well!)
- Invite friends over for dinner and a movie
This is so fun for us – we cook a yummy dinner at home, relax in our cozies, and have those life conversations that leave you feeling full. Our friends and I will often swap houses, or we will bring food to help out, whatever we feel is best for the gathering. It’s much less expensive than going to a restaurant, and often so much more satisfying.
- Picnic with friends or your S/O
This is such a great way to get together with girlfriends or a date idea with your S/O. You can bring games, snacks, drinks, whatever you would like, and enjoy being outside. If you don’t have a backyard, you could go to a nearby park, a lake or beach, or even an indoor picnic in your living room.
- Coffee dates with girlfriends
This is one of my favorite things to do with my girlfriends. I love meeting early in the morning at a coffee shop, sipping a delicious coffee (a $5 treat for an hour or two of community is well worth it to me), talking about life. Since I normally make coffee at home, having a speciality coffee is such a fun treat, and it’s even better because it’s with dear friends.
This has been one of Marco and mine favorite hobbies for our entire relationship. We love packing up the camper and seeing different parts of California. After paying the initial plot fee, it is a relatively cheap way to travel, and Abby loves being in nature and running around exploring!
When I first moved to SLO, I didn’t know anyone. I was so anxious about making friends, and had no idea how I would be able to meet people since I work from home. I began going to a few Meetups that were in alignment with what I enjoy doing, and even though I was nervous going alone, it turned out to be such a blessing. I made many friends through this, and they are mostly all free! Meetups have every single group that you could think of, from sports, to book clubs, to movie clubs, and more. If you are new to a city, this is a great idea!
I hope this gives you some ideas to incorporate into your routine. Remember, social media is only a highlight reel of people’s life. I’ve been taking a long break from social media, and it has been so refreshing to not see what other people are doing, and just focus on being present in my life and enjoying the things that bring true fulfillment to me.
I’ll be back on September 1st to share my takeaways from that further, but if you are thinking of taking a break from social media, I highly encourage it. You don’t have to take a near four months off as I did, even a weekend away will refresh you in ways you didn’t imagine if you’re feeling drained from consuming so much.
The most important thing to takeaway from this post is to envision what brings you fulfillment, not what you think you should be doing, and make it a priority to do just that.
Have a question? Share it below! I love coaching women on finding more fulfillment while honoring budgets and empowering themselves around money. You CAN save, budget, and meet your financial goals while having fun and feeling fulfilled (more fulfilled than ever before).