I ran my credit card bill up...Thought a new dress would make it better
-Solange "Cranes in the Sky"
Today sucked so I'm going to the clearance rack at Target and buy something to make me feel better...or drive myself further into debt. That's an actual thought I've had before.
Dear Undercover Over-Spender, we've got to do better. That's all the letter really needs to say but knowing we need to do better has never been enough.
I've been on a quest since the start of 2017 to clean up my credit and reduce my debt. So far I'm just about in the 700 club but my debt to income ratio is still hella outta control. Every income tax season I pay a credit card off that is only supposed to be used for emergencies, I need Chick-Fil-A is not a real credit card emergency no matter how hungry you are.
Now I must cut myself a little slack because for the first time in forever I only have one maxed out card, I know that's not that great but normally I have 2. Here's what I'm learning the more I pay attention to my bank account....
1. Be Honest
I don't kidd anymore myself, I know I won't pay off that ridiculous $45 Amazon purchase with interest like I tell myself. Instead, if it's not gas, groceries, or an ACTUAL necessity, I save for it. I know I want a FitBit so I put a little money to the side here and there for it. I could instantly buy it with a credit card and I could also pay the interest on it income tax 2018.
2. Be Accountable
Accountability in my book involves a budget. I know every month what bills I have to pay and how much they cost. I also know which check will be big and which one won't stretch too far. Whatever money I have left over I try to save.
I get it, every time I read those blogs about saving my first thought is, saving is for rich people. Not so! Even just $10 in my savings account has saved me a few times from whipping out the credit card.
3. Be Responsible
If you took a look at your bank statement how often would you see charges for eating out? Spontaneous shopping trips for things you don't need or could find cheaper? KNOW WHERE YOUR MONEY IS GOING! I challenge you for the next 30 days to keep track of all the money you spend. You'll probably find times where you spent money you didn't have to on an impulse.
4. Be Knowledgeable
I can't tell you how many blogs, books, and articles I've read this year trying to not only get my act together but also get to the root of my money problem. So do the research. Make a plan and get your money up.
I by no means have it completely together but here's the start of my journey. It's kinda like shooting in the gym with me.