Posted in Debt, Life, money

5 Ways I Have Gained Control Of My Spending Habits

The poverty mindset is living with a flight or fight mentality

5 Ways To Gain Control Of Spending

I will admit I have a problem. Actually, more than one honestly. There were a good 30 days straight recently where I ordered something from Amazon every day. I knew I couldn’t afford to do this when I did it, but I did it anyway. I was choosing to live moment to moment. I had what I call the poverty mindset.

The poverty mindset, to me, means you live with a fight or flight mentality. You live each day as it comes with no preparations for the future. If you only have $30, you will spend it all on lottery and crab legs instead of being frugal. It is, in my mind, a survival mechanism. It is one I see all too often. When you are fighting for survival, immediate gratification is the only thing that matters.

Pay Rate

I implemented a rule of thumb in my spending that has made a huge difference for me. First, figure out the amount you get paid hourly. Then, before you buy anything, figure out how many hours you will have to work to pay for it. This method has been extremely beneficial for me.

Envelope

I like to experiment with budgets, but I’m pretty dead set on the envelope budget now. I think. It seems to have helped me the most save money on a near constant basis. This is because I see the envelopes as they dwindle away and I tend to cling tighter to the balances.

Lunch

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Eating out everyday is the fastest way to go into debt. Those small amounts, done frequently, are the things that devastate your finances.

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Photo by Carlos Lindner on Unsplash

Separate Accounts

Set up separate spending accounts and allot yourself a set amount to spend. Do not go over it. This has also helped me. I can’t give myself an allowance in and stick to it when it is all in the same account. It also helps to hide money from my husband. I mean, my kids.

Credit

This one hurts. Allow yourself to buy absolutely nothing on credit. If you can’t pay cash, you can’t afford it. So, basically, I can’t buy anything unless I pay cash. Instead, every time I get a commission or unexpected sum of money, I gift myself with a little impulse buy.

I want to be responsible financially and also enjoy nice things. It is possible with rules in place.

In conclusion, as with everything, I will spend in moderation now so I can enjoy my retirement with less stress later.


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Posted in credit repair, Debt, Finance, Life, money

Paying Off Debt Quickly Using The Snowball Method

Using this method, paying off debt can be done with fast results and skyrocketing credit scores

A lady exasperated by her debt, trying to figure out how to pay it all
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We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.

-Aristotle

A debt snowball is not a crumpled up wad of bills for you to throw around in the snow. It is a debt reducing strategy that I learned from financial guru, Dave Ramsey. I have tried almost every financial strategy in existence and this one is the one I recommend to my financial or credit analysis clients.

Using this method, paying off debt can be done a little at a time for faster results and skyrocketing credit scores.

Step 1

Add up all of your debt and allocate them into categories such as credit cards, medical, collections, loans, etc. Then further allocate them by the ones with the highest interest rate down to the lowest. Use the method on each section or, if you can only do one at a time, start with the debt that has interest on it.

Step 2

Pay the minimum payment due on all except the one with the smallest balance or the highest interest rate. I would recommend sorting first by interest rate and then by balance to save the most money in the long run. However you decide to do it, pick the one to pay as much over the minimum payment as you can afford.

Repeat until the first debt is paid off in full.

Step 3

Repeat the first two steps over and over with the remaining debt until everything is paid off and you are one of the rare, debt-free individuals that we hear about so often.

After that final debt is cleared, you will be amazed how fast things got better for you financially and regretful for how long it took you to do it. Suddenly, you’ll be in the position to buy something that you need when you need it and use cash. Being debt free is an amazing feeling to have especially if you have almost drowned from it before.


That doesn’t sound like a big deal to some people, but I know many, many people who pray for only that circumstance to happen in their lives before they die. They just want a chance to not worry constantly about making ends meet for a few moments in their life before it’s over.

I am a definite realist and true unbeliever in fairy tales. So, please believe me when I tell you that this goal is attainable for everyone. Anyone willing to put in the work can make this happen. As with anything else, small changes and/or steps done on a consistent basis will quickly lead to great accomplishments.

My favorite financial quote has always been, “It is not how much money you earn, but how much you don’t spend that determines your wealth.” It is also a quote that I have heard from my brother 1 million times so it has stuck in my head. Which reinforces my point that anything we do repeatedly becomes an action.