Nice article, Angela! I like how you arrived at an intermediate stage between the ZBB and 50/30/20 systems that works for you. Mine's closer to a 40/40/20 system (needs and wants/savings and investments/taxes).
Slightly off-topic but I'm curious. At which point did the penny drop and you realised you couldn't assume you were naturally good at saving money? I'm wondering if this is something that came to you naturally once you felt you had to begin "adulting", or if it is something you felt forced to do because of financial/economic circumstances.
I ask this because I'm drafting an article in which I lay out my argument that Gen Z-ers are paying the price of decisions made by every generation preceding them stretching all the way back to the boomers. I know it's kind of de rigueur to pin all the blame on the boomer generation but I'm' trying not to let my generation (Gen X) and the next one (millennial) off the hook either. :)
For the record, when I started work way back in 2001, a personal budget was something we saw as "nice to have" rather than a "need to have". I think the inflection point happened post-2007/08 financial crisis when it dawned to a lot of people that budgeting was a necessity, not a nuisance.