30 Things to Accomplish in my 30s:
#26. Use Dave Ramsey’s Envelope System the entire decade.
I like this one.
If. If I had actually done this, I’d be in a really good place financially.
Eight years ago, I did Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University class at my church. The class is phenomenal. If you apply the principles taught in the class, you’re going to go places.
I learned how to make a budget.I learned how to use the envelope system.
I learned about the Debt Snowball.
I learned the evils of credit cards — I’ve never had one and I plan on keeping it that way!
I learned the Seven Baby Steps.
I was told that I needed to have an accountability person — and that’s where the problems started.
Because my pastor thought he should get to see my budget and make decisions about how I spent my money.
I paid off a lot of debt.
I was working two part-time, minimum wage jobs and I managed to pay off about $15,000 in debt in roughly 2 years — even though for over half of that time, I was working less than 40 hours a week.
I think the reason this worked for me was because I used the envelope system. I budgeted my money meticulously. I put money for bills in my checking account and everything else was paid in cash. If the envelope didn’t have money in it, I didn’t buy it. I budgeted $2.50 per week for pie at Perkins and that was the extent of my fun money. I had an envelope for groceries, one for gas, one for clothing, one for toiletries and household items. I budgeted $10 a month for “mad money” and that was all I got. If an envelope was empty, I didn’t need whatever it was I wanted to buy. After filling my envelopes on payday and paying my bills, everything that was left went to extra payments on loans.
I paid off my car and my Perkins loan in about 3 months and then I was able to put a huge dent in my Stafford loan.
And then my entire existence went to pot.
Four years ago, I had lofty ambitions to get back on the bandwagon and take care of business. I was — again — working a part-time, minimum wage job and I could barely make ends meet. About 3 weeks after penning this goal, I was offered a full-time position at my job and I completely forgot about how helpful the envelope system had been.
So, no. I haven’t done this one at all. But I really, really need to.