Did I Really Save on this Personal Spending Challenge?
You may recall a while back, I set myself a personal spending challenge. A fun personal finance challenge to give myself a head start on my wealth era that I’m taking myself on for 2024. It was a challenge that I gave myself for January, with the rules set out on a Reels over on my Instagram.
Well, we are now in the month of February, which means the challenge is over and I finally have the results of my no spend January challenge. But did I really save money? Was I successful?
No Spend January: The Results.
The short answer is, yes. I successfully completed the challenge. I didn’t break any of my rules, which I’m most proud of. The fact that I didn’t cave and didn’t buy a takeout coffee for the entire month is worth the pat on the back.
For my budgeting I break my finances into three sections: Expenses (rent, bills, etc), Saving and Spending. After the end of the spending challenge, the breakdown of money to these categories was:
62.7% on expenses
30.4% on savings
6.9% on spending
How you like to breakdown the percentages of what goes where is totally up to you. For this challenge, I’m chuff that I was able to keep my spending under 10%. The money only went to two places. Wellness, which was pilates classes, and gardening things.
My saving is also something that makes me smile. In total, I was able to save over £1,000 into my smug funds. This has allowed me to create a nice cushion and really spurred on filling up these pots.
The biggest win however, was being able to put more money towards one of the credit cards we are paying off. After moving some money around, I’m happy to say that by the end of February, we’ll have paid off one credit card. This wasn’t due for another four months, so the fact we can do this means we’ve moved that additional spending to my credit card, which will mean that by the end of summer, we will be debt free.
The Future of Our Finances.
For now, we’ve gone back to normal. But I have noticed that I’m not craving spending in areas I would usually before the spending challenge. I’ve still not had a takeaway coffee, I’m not bothered about buying new clothes. However, I was very happy to restock on my usual beauty products, and a few little treats. It’s interesting how a break can allow you to have a whole new prospective on how you want to spend your money.
The biggest change coming this month is that I’m due a pay rise and a bonus, which is getting paid in February. Currently, I know I’m going to treat myself with part of my bonus. I’ve had my eye on the Dyson Airwrap for a while, so I’m finally going to treat myself to it.
As for my pay rise, I’m going to continue to ‘live’ the salary I’m currently on, putting the difference into automatic savings for a year. If I’m lucky and get another pay rise next year, I’ll then move up to what my new salary is going to be this year. This will allow me to continue for years to come to live below my means and save automatically as and when I can.
The final question on what’s to come with my personal finances, is if there’s another no spending challenge in the future? The answer is yes, I’m planning to do another one in May to help reset the accounts ready for a busy summer. Wish me luck.