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It is a good idea to take a look at your budget periodically to find things that you really
aren't using or enjoying. In this video, Tasha reveals six things she cut from her budget. Want to learn about apps that can help you budget? Check out this video: https://youtu.be/1VKAU-YPRDU.

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Hi, I'm Tasha with one big happy life on behalf of the financial diet, and this is the lifestyle fix brought to you by Skillshare. In today's video, I'm gonna be talking about some of the unnecessary expenses that I took out of my budget for good, or at least with the current intention of never adding them back into my budget. But when it comes to personal finance. I also recognize that different life phases and circumstances could cause me to make different financial choices in the future. Purchases that don't make financial sense to me at this stage in my life might get added back into my budget a few years from now out of necessity; or even purely by choice. You see, I'm all about making financial decisions that are in line with your vision for your life, and that vision can and will change over time. Alright, so now let's talk about those unnecessary items that I've taken out of my budget. Number one, late fees, and high-interest debt, okay, this is one of those that I'm not gonna be adding back into my budget. When I was just starting out with adulting, I wasn't making much money, and I also had pretty bad money habits. I've used my credit cards to shop and eat out, spending money that I really couldn't afford to spend, and carrying a balance from month to month. I didn't know how to budget like I do now, and I didn't have my 1-year spending plan like I do now. So, because I didn't really know what was going in or out, and I couldn't really plan for what was coming later on down the line in the year. I'd run out of money before my next paycheck all the time, so I'd incur late fees because I couldn't pay my bills. Or I'd have to deal with bounced check fees or interest. Those fees would easily add up to over a hundred dollars a month, which was a huge percentage of my income back then. And still a lot of money, in the grand scheme of things, considering that's just money down the drain. Over time, my money management skills have improved dramatically, and having a one-year spending plan has really helped me with that. If you don't have one, you can head over to onebighappylife.com/budget and grab a free template to get you started. Now I plan for my spending well in advance; my bills are paid with last month's paychecks instead of having to wait for money to come in at the right time. I have sinking funds for the expected unexpected, like car repairs, I pay my credit cards in full every month, and I have an emergency fund that I can tap into if something truly unexpected comes up.
Number two, a gym membership. I've had a gym membership for most of my adult life, up until about two years ago. In fact, anytime we needed to move to a new place, we'd always consider proximity to a gym when deciding where we would live, along with proximity to a bike path and a Costco. We considered all of those things when we bought our current house, we found this neighborhood we loved the fact that the house was just a few minutes away from a gym that also had racquetball courts in a pool and had access to a bike trail that was ten plus miles long. Within our first week of moving into our new house, we signed up for the gym membership, and then for the first time in our entire adult lives, we went months and months and months without using it. You see, in our new life here in the DC area, we had long commutes into the city, and not too long after moving here, we had a brand-new baby that kept us super busy, plus there was the fact that the gym itself wasn't the greatest it had clearly not been updated in a while. And the owners showed no intention of updating it, plus the pool was always unavailable in the evenings because the local swim team practiced there. Given that we left for work before the gym even opened in the morning, making morning swims impossible. Not being able to access the pool in the evenings really was pretty frustrating. After a while, we did admit to ourselves that even if the pool was available, we'd still rarely use it because we just didn't have the hours in the day to train for triathlons like we used to when we lived closer to work, didn't have a baby and weren't building a business on the side of our jobs. After a year of barely heading to that gym, that was also pretty expensive by the way. We decided to try something that we had never done before, creating a home gym. We already had some equipment because we had trainers for our road bikes that could turn them into stationary bikes, we also already had an elliptical and adjustable dumbbells that I had bought back in 2007 and moved from place to place ever spent, and we had a basement with space. So, we canceled our gym membership and bought a home gym complete with a Smith cage pulley system and three hundred and seventy pounds of plate weights. That sweet set-up cost less than a year's worth of gym premiums, which means that it has more than paid for itself in the two-and-a-half years since we bought it. Though, we do still struggle to find the time to work out consistently. We certainly work out way more than we did before we bought our home gym, especially in the winter when the colder temps want to keep us in our beds instead of actually heading outside for exercise. I love the convenience of having a gym right in our basement, and I hope that it's something that we will always have. I'm hoping that we'll be able to move to a less expensive area two years from now once Joseph's student loans are gone, so we've already started to look at houses around the country. Now, instead of looking for proximity to a gym, we're checking to make sure that the house has room for all of our gym equipment. Number three, a financed cell phone. I remember buying my first cell phone when I was a teen for less than a hundred dollars. Back then, it was a simple audio box that resembled a small cordless phone. Does anyone even have cordless phones anymore? That thing was a tank. I dropped it downstairs, in puddles, it would take a beating and just keep on working like a boss, and it didn't even have a case; of course, today's phones do a lot more than my old-school Audiovox did, and they cost a lot more too. The first smartphone I ever bought cost several hundred dollars, and it was more than I could afford out of pocket at the time, so when the cellphone company offered to let me pay for it over time, well, of course, I took him up on that; and so, the cycle of financing pricey cell phones began. Now it was always a zero percent financing but still, that financing kept me locked into contracts with expensive service providers for years, I finally decided to change all that in 2015. Joseph and I had just left Texas and moved to Philadelphia so that I could accept a promotion, but our house in Texas was still on the market, making supporting two households a challenge even with my raise, so we looked at our budget and realized that we were paying almost $300 a month for our cell phones, it never bothered us before, but when cash got tight we realized how ridiculous that was. So we sold our phones on eBay, canceled our pricey cell phone plans, and switched over to a budget plan that cost us less than $40 for unlimited talk and text and minimal data for three phones, and we purchased those phones for cash, $100 each; since then, we've continued to pay cash for our phones, and we've continued to prefer lower-priced smartphones generally eventually as our business grew and our need for better cameras for our social media content increase while then we purchased thousand-dollar phones but also for cash, and entirely as a business expense. Now, when I buy a cell phone, or any other purchase for that matter, I look at the entire price to help me decide whether I want to buy that item; and not just whether the monthly payment fits within my budget.
Number four, manicures, nail polish, and gel nails, so I grew up in Brooklyn, where getting your nails done at the salon every two weeks was a common practice; in fact, I spent many a weekend at the nail salon with my mom watching her get her acrylic nails filled in. that space where her nails had grown out since her last appointment I couldn't pay for my own nails and my mom certainly was not about to pay for a child to have acrylic nails, so I do my own manicures at home, sometimes changing my polish nightly to match my outfits. So it's not surprising that the minute I had a steady job at 16, I started getting my nails done, 20 dollars every two weeks like clockwork that continued for years and years eventually, I realized that I was spending on those bi-weekly nail appointments more out of habit than anything else, and I realized that the acrylic was doing massive damage to my natural nails, so I stopped going to the salon and went back to the far more economical practice of just doing my own manicures at home. Eventually, I even stopped doing that because it was just far too time-consuming and high-maintenance for me. I can't imagine ever going back to getting my nails done on a regular basis or even polishing my own nails now that's just my hands. Though I do still get a pedicure a few times a year, mostly during the warmer months.
Number five monthly waxing appointments. This is one of those on-again-off-again kinds of things for me. When we lived in Texas, I had a standing wax appointment every single month, then we moved to Philadelphia and cut out all of those extras from our budget recently, we started adding a few of those back in, and one of the things that I chose was to go back to getting my regular waxes. It was fun to get back into waxing for those first few months, but I soon found myself not really wanting to go all the way to a salon when I had managed my personal grooming just fine by myself at home for years. But this is a perfect example of how spending fast can really help reset your financial priorities. I thought I missed my regular waxes, but it turns out that I actually didn't miss them, what I missed was the idea of them. The idea that I could spend money on a small bit of self-care every month now that's not to say that I won't ever get waxed again, but if I do, it will be a one-off thing and not a monthly pay for a year-long past standing appointment kind of thing. Number six, anything I was doing solely to meet other people's expectations, now I am all about spending money on what matters to you. I believe that a person can decide to buy a nice car because they want one or to live in an expensive condo in Manhattan because, to them, that is the definition of a good life. There's this narrative out there that if people are spending money to have nice things then it must be because they're trying to keep up with the Joneses, that's an overgeneralization, that just isn't always the case, but it does have some truth to it. Many of us get into this habit of just spending by default, spending because everyone else is spending, spending just to fit in. This kind of spending doesn't actually benefit us in the long run because we're substituting someone else's judgment about what a good life looks like for our own, which often just leads us to feeling dissatisfied. Over the years, I've let go of so many preconceived notions about what a good life should look like or what success looks like. Instead, I focus on what I want for my life and why I want those things for the foreseeable future. I will likely spend money to have a home that can accommodate gym equipment, I'll buy a latte or two a week, I'll splurge on conveniences like having a meal delivery service when it suits me, and I'll do all of those things because I want to, and not because I think I should or because I see other people doing it. So now that I've shared a list of things that are unlikely to find their way back into my budget. Let's talk about how you can learn essential life skills Skillshare. Skillshare is an online learning community with thousands of classes in design business technology and more Premium Membership gives you unlimited access to high-quality classes on essential topics, so you can improve your skills unlock new opportunities and do the work you love looking to learn some new skills, so you can finally start that side hustle check out DK Angie's class mastering illustrator 10 tips and tricks to speed up your workflow where you'll learn the tricks of the trade they use to tackle design projects quickly and efficiently in Illustrator click the link in the description box to join the millions of students already learning on Skillshare today and to take advantage of a special offer just for TFD viewers use the link below to get two months of unlimited access to over 25,000 classes for free act now, so you don't miss out and start learning today thank you so much for watching and be sure to subscribe and tune in here every single Friday for another new episode of the lifestyle fix see you next week you.