Saturday, February 9, 2008

Trouble with Tracking

Ugh! Tracking all expenses is difficult! I can't keep up! Guess I'm spending too often if it's too hard to keep up with tracking!

It seems like such a simple thing to do, but it's not. I'm always checking our on line account to monitor our expenses. You'd think this would make it easy to check the day's spending, but it seems to just complicate things. Usually I'll record the days spending as I remember it and check on line to make sure I didn't miss anything, or check to see if my husband spent anything or paid any bills, etc. Sometimes a transaction (debit) doesn't appear until a couple of days after. Then I can't tell if it is something I already recorded or not.

Then there's the problem of tracking things like when I earn or spend CVS extrabucks. Do I count it as earnings when I get the extrabucks and then count as spending when I spend them? That seems logical but for some reason it can get confusing.

Then the thought of trying to reconcile all the daily totals into monthly totals seems like it will be a lot of work.

I need to figure out a better way to do this. Maybe a spreadsheet in Excel.

I used Quicken for a short time in the past but couldn't keep it up.

I think this could be a very valuable process if I can learn to get it right. I like the idea from Your Money Or Your Life, when you total your spending in each category for the month and then EVALUATE how you feel about the spending for each category. Like you're fine with it, would rather increase that spending, or would rather decrease that spending (did you receive value in proportion to life energy spent for each category).

I really want to get to that evaluation step, so need to figure out the daily tracking part.


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Read more on this topic in Your Money or Your Life (Part 1).