Budgets can be tough to follow and easy to fail at for some people. Strict rules and constant bookkeeping make them a chore than a lifestyle. These 4 alternatives can keep you in the green without the hassle.

MONEY CRASHERS

So you try. You save all your receipts and spend hours tallying up your expenses, sorting them into categories, and crunching numbers to figure out how much you need to set aside each month for recurring bills. You enter it all in a database and carefully tweak the numbers until you’ve got everything planned down to the penny.

Then real life happens. Maybe your car breaks down, or you chip a tooth and have to go to the dentist, or your electric bill is way higher than you expected. Or maybe you just get tired of having to turn down invitations to go out to dinner or see a show because you’re “on a budget.” Whatever the reason, your budget gets blown wide open – and since you’ve been told you can’t possibly meet your goals without a budget, you figure you may as well just give up right now.

Maybe it’s time for a new approach. I’ll let you in on a secret: There are actually quite a few successful people who don’t use budgets. If you follow their example, you can also reach your financial goals without one.