I know, I know. The word “budgeting” makes people grit their teeth and tune me out. Yes, I’m one of the very few people I know who enjoy spending so much time monitoring things on Excel. No, I’m not the only one who looks for easy ways to make big differences everyday.

Scroll down to review this free budgeting infographic from Quicken!

Due to major financial problems and this insane job market for people with degrees in Humanities, I decided to make a major change in my life. I both started a tutoring business and became a freelance writer. Now, you all know that businesses never meet immediate success (unless you’re Bill Gates). Since I graduated from college (December 2010), I’ve been relatively broke.

How can I survive without making much money? Simple. I trimmed all of the fat, and maybe even some of the tendons, from my budget. “Simple” really is an understatement. I only had money to buy for things that I needed to have. Even $1-2 luxuries were out of the picture. It changed my life.

That’s how I survived in an economy where I made maybe ~$200 a month.

Fortunately, my freelance writing career has started to take off, and now I’m able to make enough money per month to actually pay my rent and afford my own groceries! Naturally, my financial times have not flipped upside down immediately. I still have a long way to go before I’m at the point I want to be, but I learned quite a lot about making ends meet in these past few years than I ever thought possible.

If you’re looking for free samples, it’s probably not just because you like trying new products. I usually hunt out free samples or steeply-discounted produce because that’s all I can afford. I understand what it’s like, and I know how to help.

One easy way to check out how you can make a difference in your own life and budget is to review this budgeting infographic from Quicken. Although I hope you know about many of these changes, please read thoroughly and take them all into consideration.

Budgeting-How Small Cutbacks Lead to Great Savings

Personal Finances from Quicken

Do you use any of these tips or tricks? When do you splurge on purpose?

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Paid Endorsement Disclosure: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Disclaimer: None of the posts on this blog should serve as medical advice. I am not a medical professional, and I advise you to seek out professional assistance before making any major lifestyle changes.
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