October 19, 2010

The Nerd and the Free Spirit

When it comes to the budget, Dave Ramsey says one spouse is the Nerd and the other is the Free Spirit. The nerd enjoys numbers and coming up with the budget, while the free spirit doesn't care about it and feels controlled by it.

It isn't so black and white with Nathan and I. We're both nerds in some ways, but we can also be free spirits. While Nathan may seem like the nerd at first glance since he loves accounting and is working on an MBA, I have kept records of my earnings and spending since I was 11 years old and engage in what Nathan refers to as "stalking" our bank accounts online ("Did you enjoy that Arby's you had for lunch?").

When it comes to creating the budget, Nathan is the nerd. He sets the amounts for each category each month, and he was the one who planned out our debt snowball. Although I offer some input, I remain the "whatever you want" free spirit for the most part. Being the Excel guru that he is, he set up an amazing budget tracking spreadsheet for us with all kinds of drop down menus and formulas.

However, in terms of actually tracking the budget and trying to ensure that we stick with it, I become the nerd. I'm the one who records all the transactions in our Excel spreadsheet and makes sure bills get paid on time. I will give Nathan reports and observations on how we're doing with the budget.

The important thing is that we both know where we want to be financially and we're working together to get there. If we agree on the budget, we shouldn't have any major disagreements over money.


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