Intentions

“Intention is one with cause and effect. Intention determines outcome. And if you are stuck and not moving forward, you have to check the thought and action that created the circumstance.”

Oprah Winfrey

As I am starting my challenge this coming week, I thought that it would be a good idea to lay down my rules and intentions for the week going ahead as the foundations of this experiment. Afterall I do not believe that this is a challenge to take lightly, I need to carefully work out a set of rules and stick to them in order to succeed at this challenge, and ‘challenge’ is definitely the right word.

So without digressing any further, here will be my rules for the following week ahead of me:

  • The budget for the day must cover, travel to work (from is another story*), breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as any additional items I may require (snacks, medications, drinks, going out, etc.)
  • I may utilise items that are in my cupboard or freezer that has been purchased in the weeks previous to me doing this experiment, but I will limit myself to only one item from the cupboard per day.
  • I may utilise any leftover food that wasn’t eaten the night previous and find other ingenious ways to keep the daily budget costs down.
  • Any money from the daily budget that hasn’t been spent will be collected, however, it will be saved for a ‘treat’ on the ultimate day of the experiment. It cannot be carried onto the following day.
  • I must also complete 3 challenges, to which I will be letting my Twitter followers choose which challenges.

My intention with this challenge is to see whether a budget this extreme is doable in London, considering transportation to work as well as food and any other additional items that crop up unexpectedly that I may have the need to acquire.

Things I will be looking at will be:

  • Are the methods of transportation sustainable?
  • What is the quality and quantity of the food that I can afford like?
  • What are my moods, energy and productivity levels like?
  • What is the quality of my sleep like?
  • Biggest challenges
  • Biggest surprises
  • Interesting things I hadn’t accounted for

If you’d like to follow me on this journey, then feel free to follow my blog posts or to keep an eye out for the hashtag #CharlotteCutsCosts and get involved in what challenges I participate in, as well as keeping up to date with everything I’m doing.

Challenges

“Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change.”

Brené Brown

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This year I want to be more creative and experiment with different things, really throw myself into the deep out of my comfort zone, whether that be through my work, social life or even just in my day to day life. When I was asked to produce a project for the upcoming week for work, I jumped at the opportunity to try something new and had a few ideas that I actually wanted to try instead of just writing about.

A huge part of personal finance naturally comes down to budgeting, whether you’re saving, repaying or spending, budgeting is an integral part of looking after your finances. Without it, you’re bound to find yourself in a bit of financial conundrum. Therefore I thought that it would be a good idea to base my idea around the whole notion of budgeting and the challenges that come with budgeting.

Generally, I spend around £17.80 on a typical workday, which will include my travel fares to and from work for that day, my food for at home and money for lunch, whether I decide to eat out or take in lunch from home, that’s around about my daily average.

Now, although I do live in London, I can’t help but think that that is quite a lot of money to be spending on a daily basis. And that doesn’t include things such as bills, subscriptions (such as the Gym, Netflix or even a music subscription service such as Spotify or Apple music), the running of a vehicle or other basic necessities such as toiletries. So all in all, it’s looking costly.

I decided that I would set myself a tight budget for 5 working days out of the 7 days of the week, totalling £3 a day, which would include travel, food and any other expenses that I would need covering throughout the course of that week. £3 is less than a quarter of my daily budget that I usually spend, so will it actually be doable?

If you’re interested in seeing how my challenge pans out throughout the week, then be sure to follow me or the hashtag #CharlotteCutsCosts to keep up with the latest developments.