Worry Free Money: How to Align Your Budget with Your Values


“Worry Free Money: Stop Budgeting, Start Living” by author Shannon Lee Simmons is a personal finance book that encourages readers to take a guilt free approach to manage their money. 

The book is a fresh voice, arguing that traditional approaches to money management can create feelings of misery, which can be counterproductive. Instead, Simmons offers a new way, a practical and personalized approach to money management that emphasizes the importance of finding balance, joy, and purpose in your financial life. 

The book includes financial advice on creating a new plan, focusing on the big picture, embracing a guilt-free approach, and adapting to life’s changes. Overall, “Worry Free Money” offers valuable insights and actionable advice on managing your money without feeling guilty or deprived.

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5 Key Takeaways

  1. ​​Money is emotional: Simmons highlights the emotional impact of money and how it can affect our lives unexpectedly. She argues that understanding and accepting our emotional connection to money is the first step toward taking control of our finances.
  2. Develop a personalized financial plan: The book emphasizes the importance of a personalized financial plan considering your unique values, goals, and priorities. Simmons provides various tools and resources to help readers create a plan that works for them.
  3. Avoid financial guilt: Traditional approaches to money management often create feelings of guilt and shame, which can be counterproductive. Simmons offers a guilt-free approach to managing your money, allowing you to enjoy your life while achieving your financial goals.
  4. Focus on the big picture: Instead of getting bogged down in the details of a rigid budget and saving every penny, Simmons encourages readers to focus on the big picture. You can create a financial plan that supports your overall well-being by prioritizing the things that matter most to you.
  5. Be adaptable: Modern life is unpredictable, and our financial plans must adapt to changing circumstances. Simmons provides practical advice on adjusting your financial plan as your life changes so that you can stay on track with your goals.


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    Who is Shannon Lee Simmons?

    Author Shannon Lee Simmons is a personal finance expert and founder of The New School of Finance. The book is designed to help readers break free from the guilt and anxiety of managing money.

    Simmons argues that old-school approaches to personal finance, such as creating strict traditional budgets and saving every penny, can be too rigid and unrealistic for many people. Instead, she encourages readers to take a fresh approach to financial planning, considering their values, priorities, and overall well-being.

    How long is Worry Free Money?

    The book is roughly 320 pages long, or about a 9-hour read.

    Worry Free Money Book Summary: The Guilt-Free Approach to Managing Money

    There are many ways to manage your money, but not all are equal. A “guilt-free” approach to managing your cash aligns with your values and helps you live a life that aligns with your goals and dreams.

    worry free money advice

    Some people feel guilty about spending money on themselves, but if you are not taking care of yourself, you will not be able to care for others. Therefore, balancing spending money on yourself and investing in your future through meaningful savings is important.

    A guilt free approach to managing your money also means being honest about what you can afford and not going into debt unnecessarily. If you constantly worry about money, it is time to step back and reassess your budget. Find areas where you can save money, and ensure your spending aligns with your values.

    It is also important to remember that there is no such thing as “perfect” when managing your money. Financial literacy is a continuous process. Everyone makes mistakes, and it is essential to learn from them. The goal should be to become more mindful of your spending and saving habits so that you can make the best choices for your future.

    How to Prioritize Your Values When Creating a Budget

    When it comes to budgeting, one of the most important things you can do is to make sure that your spending aligns with your values. This means closely examining what you believe is important in life, allocating resources accordingly, and eliminating unhappy spending. 

    For some people, their values may be focused on family, others on their careers, and still others on personal growth or service to others. There is no right or wrong answer here – it’s all about figuring out what matters most to you and ensuring your budget reflects that.

    One way to prioritize your values is to list them in order of importance. Then, look at your current spending and see how it lines up. For example, are you spending more on things that are lower on your list of values? If so, consider making some changes.

    Another approach is to reflect on how you want to feel in life. For example, do you want to feel abundant? Joyful? Peaceful? Free? Figure out the feeling most important to you and then design your budget accordingly.

    No matter what method you use, the goal is to ensure that your budget aligns with your values so that you can live a life that feels good to YOU.

    4 Tips for Establishing Financial Boundaries

    When it comes to money, it’s important to establish boundaries to stay on track with your budget and financial goals.

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    Here are a few tips to help you do just that:

    1. Know your values and budget accordingly

    Your values are what matter most to you in life. They guide your decision-making and set the tone for your spending habits. For example, you’ll want to budget accordingly if you value family, friends, and experiences. That means setting aside money each month for things like date nights, weekends away, and tickets to see a show or concert.

    2. Make a list before you shop

    Simmons suggests making a list before you go shopping as a way to avoid overspending. 

    By creating a list of the items you need to buy, you can focus on what is essential and avoid impulse purchases. It’s important to be specific and realistic when making your list and to prioritize the most important items. This can help you avoid overspending on non-essential items and ensure you have enough money left over for your needs. 

    Making a list before you shop can save time and reduce stress, knowing exactly what you need to buy and where to find it.

    3. Set limits for yourself

    Another strategy for avoiding overspending recommended in “Worry-Free Money” is setting spending limits with yourself. 

    This involves deciding on a specific amount of money you are comfortable spending on certain categories, such as groceries, entertainment, or clothing. It’s important to be realistic when setting these limits, considering your income and expenses. 

    Once you have established your spending limits, you can use them as a guide to help you make purchasing decisions. This can help you avoid impulsive purchases and stay within your budget. 

    By setting spending limits with yourself, you can also start to prioritize your spending on the things that matter most to you and achieve greater financial control.

    4. Track your spending tendencies

    Simmons sees tracking your spending tendencies as a key strategy for managing your finances. By monitoring your spending tendencies, you can see the impact of small purchases and find ways to cut back on unnecessary expenses. 

    The author recommends keeping a detailed record of every dollar you spend for at least a month. This can help you identify areas where you are overspending using a notebook or a budgeting app to adjust your budget accordingly. 

    Buy the book

    Set up a worry free money system and let go of financial stress

    You can live worry-free from money issues through intentional budgeting and aligning your budget with your values. Reviewing your financial life regularly and seeing how it impacts other areas of your life is important. 

    With the right strategies, you can ensure that each dollar spent aligns with what matters most and brings a sense of ease and financial independence instead of stress. Enjoy controlling where your hard-earned money goes while taking steps towards living an optimal life!

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