What does "tracking your spending" mean?

Let's meet Alex

Some of Alex’s spending is essential, and the timing is not negotiable. Other spending is what’s called “discretionary”. Can you help Alex organise the expenses in their life into these two categories? Complete the activity below.

Essential vs discretionary spending

Food for thought

What are the items in your life that you consider essential? What about discretionary items you spend money on?

Can you sort your spending into these two categories? Imagine that the essentials are the things you can't meet your basic needs without. You may be surprised at how much of your spending is discretionary!

At home

Does your household keep track of essential and discretionary spending? If so, how is this tracked? Do you discuss with your family what is essential, and what is discretionary?