Woman holding a fan of $100 bills as she contemplates her budget.

Why “You Need to Make A Budget” Is Bad Divorce Advice

Taking care of yourself has to do with more than how much you spend.

One piece of advice almost everyone going through divorce hears is “You’ve got to create a budget”. Although this is extremely practical advice, I think it sucks.

You’ve just ended your marriage. You might have just moved. You might not have your kids all the time. You might be looking for a job. And, oh yeah, you feel like CRAP! Yet now you’re supposed to figure out how to put more restrictions on yourself and create a budget?! Yeah, it just sucks as far as advice goes.

What you really need is a spending plan. A spending plan is all about you taking responsibility for how you choose to spend or not to spend your money.

OK, so you might think this is just a case of puh-tay-toh po-tah-toh, the word budget has a negative connotation for most people. And who needs more negativity as they’re putting their lives back on track after a divorce? No one I can think of.

Divorce is tough. You deserve to take care of yourself in every way possible. And, yes, this does include the words you use.

Words are incredibly powerful and can completely color your experience. For example, would you rather have a really uncomfortable meeting with someone you’ve just met or a first date? Both descriptions are of the same event, but one sounds horrible and one exciting.

Try it for yourself. What’s something you say to yourself that always makes you feel bad? Now, how can you change that into something more encouraging, or powerful, or even just nicer? (If you’re having a hard time with this idea, read about my experience with learning to use kinder words.)

Language is important. It can make advice completely worthless. It can also make the same advice inspiring and incredibly valuable.

So, would you rather create a budget or a spending plan?

I’m Dr. Karen Finn, a divorce and personal life coach helping people just like you who are dealing with the stress and pain of divorce. You can join my newsletter list for free weekly divorce adviceAnd, if you’re ready, you can take the first step toward working with me as your personal coach by scheduling a private consultation.

Dr. Karen Finn

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