The only time I ever budgeted effectively in my life was when I was using a method whereby I would rollover the balance for each category every period. So instead of having a strict spending amount for each category some categories would gradually build up credit over time and some might go negative.
If one category built up too much credit or went negative for too long, that was a signal that I needed to change habits or review my budget. If I’d built up a lot of credit in one category that wasn’t needed I’d shift it to savings (or another category that needed it) and review the budget amount. If I had a category that was in debt for most of the year the plan was to top it up from savings and then review that category or make changes to my spending habits, although I never found myself in that situation.
The idea was more akin to savings pots with a monthly input for each budget category rather than a strict spending limit, allowing one to plan and average out, say, a whole year. Psychologically it facilitated a way of being frugal one month in order to spend more in another. And it also reflected the reality of spending, which was different each period.
This might be why I haven’t gravitated to Summary effectively yet. I think it might be nice if Summary could work in this way. But maybe it’d be too complicated. Any thoughts?