Money management

Credit Cards

Credit Cards (Photo credit: 401K)

I’ve got Suze Orman’s show on in the background, halfway listening to her scolding people for their lack of money management skills.  To give her credit, she also tells them what they need to do to work their way out of whatever mess they’ve made for themselves.   Anyhow, it reminded me of my money mismanagement (lack of) skills when I was younger.

I was on my own, had decent credit, credit cards, my own small business…for someone without knowledge of how to manage your money this was a recipe for disaster.  I bought whatever I wanted whenever I wanted it.  Ended up with some serious credit card debt…yikes!

Over the past decade or so, I’ve paid off bills, managed to save money for emergencies as well as retirement, and most importantly, learned to question myself before making purchases.  Do I really need this?  Is this something that I love?  Will I use this?  Most of the time, the answer to all of those questions is “no”. Oh yeah, and one of the most important questions I now ask myself is, “Can I afford this?”.

I think one of the things that really helped me find my way out of recreational shopping was when I finally realized that I often bought things that I never used, that I ended up giving away a few months later.  Wow…what an eye-opener.  I bought things because they were on sale, I got a good deal, or whatever other excuse there was.  Once I stopped doing that, I was able to easily save money.

You know what?  It feels good to have my finances under control, to watch my savings grow, and to realize that I’m not a slave to consumerism.  Does this mean I’ve finally grown up?

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5 Responses

  1. Haha, that’s a good place to be. Some people never learn those lessons.

    • Oh I know…I work with some folks like that…and then you see the little old ladies who’ve never earned much money, but have managed to save money over the years…I really think so many of our financial problems are because we no longer are willing to delay gratification…we don’t want to wait until we can afford something, we want it right now…

  2. my step mom works for Suze so if you ever have a question you want answered, just let me know. It is a really good place your in, especially in this economy!! I wish more of us were fiscally responsible! I’m finally in that place – it is still a new feeling, but I like it!

    • That’s so cool about your step mom working for Suze…I have to admit, I wasn’t always financially responsible…but it sure feels good to be there now…sometimes I wish I’d been disciplined enough to be this way in my twenties…thinking about how much more money I’d have saved for retirement, but hey, better late than never!

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