You Need A Budget – I have tried a LOT of systems, online, apps, and paper. This is the best. Hands down. It’s what I use to manage my finances and I have no plans to change that. They have desktop and app versions. It is totally customizable (which is a must-have for anything I recommend). You can start your free trial and/or purchase here. The cost of the subscription is currently $83.99 a year and it will pay for itself easily within the first month or so of use.
(If you purchase using the link above, I will get credits on my account to use for free months of using the YNAB system.)
Freshbooks – I researched a lot of finance and accounting software systems. I think Freshbooks is the easiest, most intuitive and most comprehensive one on the market. Accounting was never my favorite subject in college so I knew I needed something easy. I love using Freshbooks as it takes all the pain out of accounting and still leaves me with all the data, reports and tracking I need. Freshbooks will track expenses, match transactions, send invoices, track time, manage projects and clients; and more. You can sign up for a free trial or one of their very affordable packages here.
(Also please note that I do receive a gift card if you purchase via the above link.)
Loaded: Money Psychology, and How to Get Ahead with Leaving Your Values Behind, by Sarah Newcomb Ph.D. – This book will fundamentally change the way you think about money and how you manage your finances. I only read in 2017, over 17 years after I began managing my finances and it was a game changer.
Profit First: Transform Your Business from a Cash-Eating Monster to a Money-Making Machine, by Mike Michalowicz – If you only read one business finance book, make it this one. Mike walks you through the exact steps to set up your business finances for success and long-term profit. I use the framework as the basis of my own business finances, with my own spin of course!
The Fresh 20 – I have tried a bunch of different meal planning apps and services. The Fresh 20 is my favorite by far. You save money by shopping for in-season items that you used multiple ways/times and it has PREP instructions to save you time throughout the week. Healthy, fresh, in season and inexpensive. Done.
Calendar – Family Organizer (Android and Apple) – This app recently replaced my longstanding loyalty to the Cozi app. Family organizer takes the family calendar to the next level with options for recurring to-do tasks, color-coding events for different family members, sticky notes, recipe storage, automatic grocery list creation from your recipes, journal, and checklists. I like the daily view and the ability to see things in the month as a whole. My whole family has it so anyone can add things to the grocery list, see work schedules, dinner menus, etc. It helps us keep up with each other!
Our Home (Android and Apple) – The Our House app lets you create tasks, assign them to one person, multiple people or rotate. You can set frequency, duration, specific notes, and even include a photo of what the finished product should look like. You also assign points. Each task earns points that can be ‘redeemed’ for rewards, which you set up yourself. You set the reward and the point value. You can also deduct points for poor behavior or for late completion. This has streamlined our home chores so much and my family loves the competition of the points.
Instacart – You likely have different grocery stores in your area, but do yourself a favor and STOP grocery shopping in-person. Make a list, shop online, have it delivered. Save yourself time AND money. If you don’t roam the aisles you will buy less. Guaranteed. Find whatever services are available in your area and make use! (Instacart shows me some love for the referral but honestly I love them already!)
Powersheets – These goal setting sheets are the most customizable, flexible option around. They cover every area of your life, have consistent check-ins, structure and some seriously adorable stickers (and that’s not even usually my style!) Do yourself a favor and buy the yearly one. You won’t be sorry!
The Desire Map Planner – These beauties by Danielle Laporte help you focus on what she refers to as your “core desired feelings”. The focus on living the life that aligns with the feelings you truly value is such a key component of living an amazing life!
The Start Today Journal – This is journaling for the super-busy and the goal-driven. 5 items of gratitude and 10 goals you are accomplishing – and it will change your life. I am on my second one of these already and have seen massive forward movement and growth.