Why Did I Quit Balancing My Checkbook?
Because somehow life has gotten busier.
I’m searching every corner of my life for time.
If I put the checkbook down and just let the bank account for everything, I save time.
Time is like gold to me.
Don’t all the bank computers really know how to do it better than me?
Work and More Work
I have an in-home dog boarding business and I’m also a part-time Personal Assistant.
Add in a daughter home from college, a rising 6th grade son, a husband, a household to run, and a blog, and my time is at a premium.
I continue to be amazed at how much time it takes to manage home life. And I’d like to do it well, rather than just fumble my way through it.
My motherhood gene really wants to do it right.
The laundry never ends, and as soon as you finish cleaning this toilet and that tub, it’s time to do it all over again.
The dishwasher gets loaded, and unloaded, sometimes twice a day.
And did I mention vacuuming, mopping and dusting?
What about the constant tidying?
Ugh. It never ends.
You’ve heard of the “circle of life?”
This is the household version.
All the upkeep and constant “stuff getting” and “errand running” is sucking the joy out of the simple pleasures of cooking for family, helping friends, and doing those extra little things to make someone feel loved and special.
The free time to do anything gets lost in the ongoing upkeep.
And when I do have free time, the thought of everything I have to do is so overwhelming that it can be hard to muster up the motivation to do anything at all.
You moms know what I mean.
Here’s Why I Quit Balancing My Checkbook
Last year sometime I overheard a tennis teammate (Oh yeah, I try to squeeze in tennis once a week too) say that she doesn’t balance her checkbook anymore.
Wow, I thought.
She was such a responsible, financially secure person.
How come she doesn’t manage her checkbook?
That made me pause, and listen to her reasoning.
She just quit one day.
Too busy. Didn’t seem to matter. The bank figures it all out anyway.
She makes a good point.
What IS the point of writing everything in the checkbook?
I mean the bank’s computerized system has it all right there for you.
Wow, what a revelation.
I’m such a rule-follower that I never would’ve thought to “let go” of manually adding and subtracting all my checkbook transactions. That’s unheard of!
What if I miss something?
I must log that deposit.
What if I forget to write down a check?
What if I miss that ATM withdrawal?
But as I get busier and busier, and yearning more and more for extra minutes in my life, I decided to give it a try.
The Bank Knows Better Than You
I used to pay my bills online and then literally write them down in my checkbook register too.
You have to account for everything, right?
It really is an archaic way of thinking in this technology age.
So I decided to let the bank do it’s job and I quit balancing my checkbook.
I had to literally give myself permission to not write anything in my checkbook register.
The bank’s system actually does a much better job of it than I do.
It doesn’t miss the dollars and cents here and there that I add or subtract incorrectly because I can’t read my own scrawl.
It doesn’t miss the ATM transactions that I promise to write down and then forget to.
It’s been several months now, and the earth hasn’t come to an end.
Think about it.
Has your bank ever been wrong?
Have you ever discovered a deposit or debit that wasn’t accounted for by the bank?
My answer? No. I haven’t.
In fact the bank caught a $100 mistake when I made a deposit at the ATM machine.
I had pushed the button saying I was depositing $25 when I was really depositing $125.
I got a letter from the bank a couple days later, having caught my error, and they credited me the money I was due.
We’re in the Age of Computers, People!
Unless you’re over 70 you’re probably doing everything online these days.
And that includes online banking.
All I have to do is go online and glance over the transactions to reassure myself that everything that was supposed to take place has taken place.
And that my friends, has added time to my life.
That’s why I quit balancing my checkbook.
Maybe you should give it a try too.