by Kelly Jo Landers
Do you believe me when I say you can achieve anything you set your mind to? Or do you think of all the things that stand in your way? I hear from many readers that say they agree with my philosophy, but they have this one challenge that stops them. I guess we need to start knocking down some of these excuses and rationalizations.
I'd like to save but I just don't make enough. You must, always, pay yourself first. A set percentage should come right off the top before you pay any other bills. Why? If you don't put a set amount away every paycheck, you have no cushion. We all have little financial surprises. If you have no money put away, what then? It never matters how much you make. It is far more important how much you keep.
I have no will power. If you can define this as a problem, then you have a good start on beating it. If you find yourself impulse shopping, then stay out of the stores. Stop shopping for entertainment. That means stay out of the malls. Don't go to WalMart for "something to do." Don't surf the net if you are unable to do so without shopping.
Eating out is my downfall. I love to eat out. Unfortunately, eating out is expensive. I make it a point to pack a lunch when I will be away from home for lunch. I do still eat out, but no more than once a week. I plan the outing and go where I have coupons or know I can eat inexpensively. Can you say, "all you can eat buffet?"
I'm too busy to do any of this. Stop right there and ask yourself who is living your life. If you are too busy to properly manage your life you need to cut something out. Do you want to live on edge all your life? Simplify, simplify, simplify! This means you need to put limits on the sports your kids play, the organizations you join, the projects you work on and the number of items you own.
I'm already so in debt that I will never be free from it. (This is, honestly, an excuse I read through my e-mail.) This person made it sound like debt was something that had happened 'to' him. We all make choices every day. If you are deeply in debt you've just made poor choices. What you did last year and last week in no way determines what you do tomorrow. Pull the credit cards out of your wallet. If you don't have them with you you cannot use them! If you make no charges, and only make payments, you will eventually reach a zero balance.
I'm a single mom (on social services, disabled, ... fill in the blanks) so I can't do much about my situation. I don't buy this one, folks. If you can't do anything about your situation, who can? Even if you bring home a small amount of money, and believe me I empathize, that does not mean every penny has to be spent. I don't think food stamps prevent you from using coupons to make them stretch a little further. If you have a large debt you don't need call waiting on your phone.
I work hard and deserve what I want. No, you don't. You only deserve what you work and save for. If 'things' are so important to you perhaps your priorities need to be realigned.
I make too little money to help out someone else. Every human has a duty to reach out to anyone less fortunate. That does not mean you have to make up for poor choices others make. It does mean you can look at the limitations of each person and find value in their life. If you truly have no extra money then give of your time and effort.
What are your excuses? How do you rationalize debt? How many credit cards do you have? Are you so busy you aren't sure if you are coming or going? Make choices, choose wisely.
The theme is that Tightwaddery equals Freedom and Freedom equals Joy. Presented by Kelly Jo Landers.
Debt from my past is preventing me from saving for my future! Tell us: Yes, debt is hindering my ability to save and I could use help dealing with it! or No, debt is not a problem but I am trying to get ahead financially!
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- The Rule of 72...or how to easily double your debt
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- How not to fall short for retirement
- This week's Readers' Tips