I'm not a money expert or a financial advisor. The ideas I'm sharing are some things I've learned and try to stick to. .
I figured out my monthly fixed expenses and a general idea of monthly necessary variables (see my last posts on budgeting and keeping a spending journal.)
I also add my monthly contribution to my savings account - 10% for me - to my monthly spending sum.
Do allow for random extra necessary variables like dentist appointments, kids birthday parties etc. AKA padding. And add that amount into your monthly expenses. Then subtract the total from the monthly net income.
If you have debt...pay it down as regularly as possible. I'm not an expert on this, but you can find some good advice online, or ask a professional financial advisor about it. Whatever you decide, add this amount into your monthly expenses.
Divide by four and that should give you a weekly cash budget. You should still have enough in your checking account for your monthly fixed bills AND some random necessary variables.
I use cash for almost everything. I take some with me in my wallet, and leave the rest in a safe place at home. If I have to use a credit card or a check, I remove that amount from my weekly cash allotment and put it in the piggy bank. .
My goal is to have some left at the end of the week to put into my cash reserve piggy bank.
Remember to keep track of every penny spent. .