Continuing the annual theme of income streams… today let’s talk about spending money.
Let’s say you want to buy something for $100. How much money do you have to earn in order to buy it?
Assuming you have taxes, you would have to earn more than $100 to be able to buy something for $100. You’d have to earn 100 * 1.(your tax rate)
If your tax rate is 20%, you would have to earn 100 * 1.20, or $120.
Your $100 purchase cost you $120.
This is simplified, of course. You could pay more in taxes, and you could add on variable expenditures based on your income (for example, tithing). You might be contributing a percentage of your income to a 401k (so, you don’t see that money until you are old enough). Perhaps you need to make $130+ in order to buy a $100 thing.
How much would a $50 dinner cost you? Based on these numbers, it would cost you (or, you would have to earn) $60 to $65.
Look, I’m not trying to be a killjoy. But I want us to change our relationship with money. I want it to be a healthy relationship. Earning money, and increasing revenue streams, is great. But we need to understand what we are really spending. We should know, to the penny, what we are spending. Dave Ramsey’s cash flow system is called “every dollar” because he wants you to track every single dollar.
An analogy: my wife and I recently started the keto diet. The way we are doing it requires that we measure what we eat… either weigh food, or use measuring cups. We’ve found that if we just “eyeball” it, and guess how much we are eating, we are wrong… every time. Our eyeballing is inaccurate.
I bet this is what we are doing with our spending. Just a little here, at this restaurant, and just a little there, at that splurge, is okay, right?
We really should track and measure what we are spending, and compare that to what we are earning.
And part of understanding our expenses is to understand how much we have to earn in order to spend that much.