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You’re broke! Been there, done that! Most of us have felt the struggle where the money just wasn’t there, whether we spent too much, didn’t make enough or had bills that never seemed to disappear. Earlier this week, I shared a blog on how to recover your budget when you’re upside down. But, what about budgeting when you’re broke?

Don't break your piggy bank

You’re living paycheck to paycheck and often times setting a budget and even starting a savings account isn’t realistic. So how do you manage? How do you start saving? How do you prepare for a stronger financial future?

For starters, you need to sit down and do a lot of thinking. Envision what a stable financial future looks like for you. Does your future involve having a savings account of $20,000? Is it having no credit card debt? Is it having money to splurge or is it about buying name brand groceries?

Next, I want you to keep a positive attitude. It can be easy to get negative, feel hopeful and feel defeated but that will never get you out of this financial struggle. Instead, keep a positive attitude, telling yourself you can do this. Tell yourself this is only temporary. Once you have a strong attitude, you’ll be ready to start a budget that is realistic and achievable for you.

Start cutting away, that’s right you need to look at all you can cut. Whether it’s temporary or permanent think about the things you pay for but maybe don’t truly need. Do you really need that gym membership, you can always go outside and walk around your neighborhood or watch free videos online. What about your cell phone bill, are you getting the most out of your minutes, maybe there is a cheaper phone plan. Don’t forget to think about your weekend spending too, are you going out with friends and spending mindlessly? Or are you eating out for lunch every day of the week?

I can go on and on with the list of things we do daily, that we don’t think can impact our wallet… but they do!

Once you’ve started to think of the things you can cut, cut them. You’d be surprised at how a gym membership or skipping a coffee stop in the morning can help your budget.

Once you started to cut away, we’re going to start clipping. That’s right it’s time to clip coupons. While you might find this to be a hassle and feel that a coupon that saves you $.50 isn’t worth it, you will soon learn that $.50 one day is $20 another day. Clipping coupons might be time-consuming but trust me, once you get the hang of it, you’ll start to enjoy the process and love how much you’re saving too.

Now, we’re going to make some extra money. When you’re struggling with a monthly budget and paying your bills you need to seek out all resources and sometimes that means doing the unthinkable… selling the things we no longer use. Look through your closet, think about the things you no longer use, wear or care about and sell them! There are tons of online websites that pay for shipping and allow you to make money on things like used clothing to designer purchases and even gently used shoes. Cleaning out your room and your house will allow you to have a clutter free space but will also give you some extra money to pay towards your credit card bill.

If you find that these little tricks are not providing the financial help you need, then it’s time to get a second job. Yes I know it’s not glamorous but there are tons of opportunities out there for a part time jobs. You can do anything from dog sitting for your neighbors to mowing lawns and even get a job waiting tables if needed. Don’t look at a job as being beneath you, look at it is holding you up. Waitresses are making good money these days and every little bit helps.

Budgeting when you have no money isn’t impossible because there are always ways to make money! So figure out what your financial goals are, see what you can cut and what you can clip, sell what you can and if worse comes to worse time it may be time to  look for another job.

Keep motivated! You can do this!