There you are at the gas tank, filling up for the week, and instead of a total of something like $40, you get a total of something like $65. You grumble, you complain, you curse and you pray, but once you get it out of your system, out comes your debit card. You swipe it for the full amount, though it was more than you thought it would be. Aside from blaming the government and anyone else you can think of, here's a question you should be asking yourself: Where is that extra $25 going to come from?
For someone on a clear budget, there's a clear answer to that question. It could be $25 less on the next trip to the supermarket (though with rising food prices, this probably isn't it), or it can come out of your vacation fund, or it simply means less money to put into savings. Or less new clothes. All good and well for people who set budgets and stick to them.
Realistically, though, how many of us are really on any type of spending plan? No matter what your income, it's all going somewhere. When the price of something as basic as food or gasoline jumps, you can't just say you'll do without it. And unless your salary goes up every time gasoline prices spike, it's going to come from somewhere. Wouldn't it make sense to know where that somewhere is?
So here's one more reason to create a budget: You'll know what higher prices mean to you, in real numbers. And if you simply can't or don't want to think about the 'b' word, at least make a mental note of the fact that higher prices for necessities means less to spend on luxuries - even the little luxuries you might consider as necessities.