Enemy of Debt http://www.enemyofdebt.com Motivational Money Management Fri, 31 Oct 2014 10:28:34 +0000 en-US hourly 1 I Love You Like a Blogger Roundup – 10/31 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/i-love-you-like-a-blogger-roundup-1031/ http://www.enemyofdebt.com/i-love-you-like-a-blogger-roundup-1031/#comments Fri, 31 Oct 2014 10:28:02 +0000 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/?p=15461 Enemy of Debt - I Love You Like a Blogger Roundup – 10/31

My fist pumps are bitter sweet this week, my friends.  If you are in the habit of checking out my links of shameless self promotion, you’ll know that I post every Wednesday in the online community of CareOne Debt Relief Services.  CareOne is the debt relief provider that Vonnie and I used to pay off $109,000 in credit card debt.  It was also where I was introduced to the blogging world and started my second career as a freelance writer.  It is with a heavy heart that I say that unless something unforeseen occurs, this week’s post is likely my […]

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Enemy of Debt - I Love You Like a Blogger Roundup – 10/31

fistpumpMy fist pumps are bitter sweet this week, my friends.  If you are in the habit of checking out my links of shameless self promotion, you’ll know that I post every Wednesday in the online community of CareOne Debt Relief Services.  CareOne is the debt relief provider that Vonnie and I used to pay off $109,000 in credit card debt.  It was also where I was introduced to the blogging world and started my second career as a freelance writer.  It is with a heavy heart that I say that unless something unforeseen occurs, this week’s post is likely my last for them.  I’ve always known that eventually my time in their Community would end, but now that the time is actually here it makes me feel a little empty inside.  My first post went live in March of 2010, and I’ve been pouring my heart and soul into telling my story and sharing my experiences there for the last 4 years and 8 months.  I did so before I even really grasped the gravity of what I was doing, or without knowing if anyone was even listening.  I raise my hand in the air one more time in gratitude for everything they have done for me, and for my family.

Keep ‘em going for my favorite posts of the week……

Posts That Make Me Fist Pump

Shameless Self Promotion

Other fist-pumping posts I wrote, or appeared in this week from around the personal finance blogosphere:

TeamEOD Was Recently Included In The Following Carnivals

Carnival of MoneyPros hosted by Financial Nerd
Finance Carnival For Young Adults hosted by Money Smart Guides
Carnival of Money hosted by Carnival of Money

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Navigating The Pace of Debt Reduction http://www.enemyofdebt.com/navigating-the-pace-of-debt-reduction/ http://www.enemyofdebt.com/navigating-the-pace-of-debt-reduction/#comments Wed, 29 Oct 2014 11:14:39 +0000 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/?p=15446 Enemy of Debt - Navigating The Pace of Debt Reduction

Happy Wednesday, EOD Nation!  I have a very special guest post for you today from friend and fellow blogger Prudence Debt Free.  She’s been a regular visitor to Enemy Of Debt for what seems like as long as I’ve been writing here.  Once I followed the link to her site and started reading I was hooked.  Today, she brings her story to Enemy of Debt.  Enjoy the post, and give her some comment love – then go check out her blog.  You’ll be hooked too! DD3 = Third dear daughter DH = Dear husband DD2 = Second dear daughter DD3’s […]

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Enemy of Debt - Navigating The Pace of Debt Reduction

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Happy Wednesday, EOD Nation!  I have a very special guest post for you today from friend and fellow blogger Prudence Debt Free.  She’s been a regular visitor to Enemy Of Debt for what seems like as long as I’ve been writing here.  Once I followed the link to her site and started reading I was hooked.  Today, she brings her story to Enemy of Debt.  Enjoy the post, and give her some comment love – then go check out her blog.  You’ll be hooked too!

DD3 = Third dear daughter

DH = Dear husband

DD2 = Second dear daughter

DD3’s Road Race & My Inspiration

Two Sundays ago, DD3 ran her first 5 km road race – a community event in which her high school fitness class took part. As I cheered her on, I found myself wishing that I was one of the runners. It’s been almost ten years since I’ve taken part in any kind of race, and I miss it – the hype; the adrenaline; the physical exertion; the satisfying high of completion; and the sense of sharing in an experience greater than the sum of its parts. DD3 was very happy with her run, but as we walked back to the car, she said, “I don’t know if I want to take the fitness class next year. If I did, I’d have to do the 10 km run.” I was struck by an inspiration. “I’ll run it with you,” I said. “We’ll do a 5 km race in the spring, and we’ll do the 10 km route next October.”

There’s nothing like having a goal to get you motivated. Sunday evening, when I went to the gym, I ran on the treadmill with new purpose. I had read Travis’ post about running the marathon  and his plans to better his time by training for pace, and I decided to adopt the same strategy. After doing leg weights for the first time in months, I ran intervals – one minute fast followed by one minute moderate – for twenty minutes. I’ll work out four times per week, I thought to myself. And I’ll increase the speed and length of the fast intervals until I’m confident that I can run 5 km in under 25 minutes. I went home feeling very admirable.

But when I got out of bed Monday morning, it hurt to walk. Tuesday was even worse. So was Wednesday. I had to brace myself every time there was a flight of stairs to descend. I had to ease myself down every time I sat. Picking anything up off of the floor was sheer torture. I didn’t do another work-out last week after my inspired Sunday effort.

I had trained for pace, but I hadn’t paced my training.

Planning debt-repayment pace

Two and a half years ago, DH and I began our journey out of debt.  Years of poor financial management followed years of money stress due to DH’s job loss and career crisis had landed us with a debt totalling $257,000. After listening to the CD version of Dave Ramsey’s book The Total Money Makeover, we saw the light. We would get our financial act together. We would cut back on our lifestyle. We would budget. We would face down our wasteful spending patterns. And we would become debt-free within five years!

After year #1, we were very close to being on track. $50,000 in debt eliminated! But during the second year, our pace slowed way down. Huge expenses combined to cramp our progress: $10,000 for a new roof; $4,500 worth of unexpected vet bills; the removal of a dangerously rotting tree coming in at $2,000; DH’s business accountant’s advice to divert $4,500. Our debt-repayment for year #2 ended up being $28,000 – a healthy number, but nothing close to our first year’s total. And not enough to allow us to reach our five-year goal.

Pacing debt-repayment plans

I think we’re lucky that our first year was so encouraging. It gave us needed confidence to take the challenges of our second year in stride. If all of those expenses had happened during year #1 of our debt-reduction, we just might have given up in discouragement. There’s a mental game involved in debt-repayment, and it has to stay positive if it’s going to work. Travis realized early in his marathon run that he was not going to achieve his goal time, but he made the decision to accept that fact and to keep running. The result? He ran a marathon! And he had a great time. After year #2, we realized that we almost certainly would not become debt-free within five years, but we’ve accepted that fact, and we’re still on the journey.

Recognizing Tough Inclines Along The Way

As Travis approached the hill towards the end of his marathon, he psyched himself up and took it on. It was no doubt harder and no doubt slower, but since he knew it would be, he had the perspective to talk himself through it. During our journey out of debt, we have also had to recognize a variety of “hills” along the way. Not only big or unexpected expenses, but times of stress too. During the Christmas rush, for instance, we know that DH’s home business will keep him working non-stop, and that we’ll probably spend more money on prepared meals to help us manage. And when unexpected stress occurs, as it did last week when two terror attacks occurred in Canada – one of them in our city – we recognize that we’re thrown off. That we slip-up. And only stumble forward.

The mental game involved in debt-reduction requires that we alter our focus depending upon the situation. Sometimes, we focus on tightening our budget, on exercising our frugality muscles, on doing without. At other times, it’s about saving for a needed purchase so that we don’t go back into debt. Sometimes we focus on gratitude for all that we DO have instead of dwelling on what we want. At other times, all we can do is to hold steady as we overcome a steep incline, and not give up. There’s a long road ahead, and we can’t see all of the challenges that will come our way – any more than we can anticipate the bursts of incredible encouragement. We just know they’re there. And we’re ready for them.

Pacing My Training

This past Sunday, I did some light weight training, and I went for a slow, steady jog outside for about twenty-five minutes. Monday morning, I woke up with no pain, and DD2 and I went for a run together in the evening. Gradually, I will build up my strength, endurance, and pace. And when I run the 5 km road race in the spring with DD3, I’ll be ready for it.

What do you do to manage your pace for financial or fitness goals? Have you ever been too aggressive, ending up with the muscle pain that I experienced last week? Is there an analogy for that pain in finances?

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Coupon Alert: Last Minute Savings On Halloween Treats! #ScarySavings http://www.enemyofdebt.com/coupon-alert-last-minute-savings-on-halloween-treats-scarysavings/ http://www.enemyofdebt.com/coupon-alert-last-minute-savings-on-halloween-treats-scarysavings/#comments Tue, 28 Oct 2014 16:56:36 +0000 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/?p=15426 Enemy of Debt - Coupon Alert: Last Minute Savings On Halloween Treats! #ScarySavings

If you’re like me, you wait until the last minute to pick up the treats to be handed out on Halloween eve.  Sometimes the early bird gets the worm, but in this case procrastinators get the opportunity to use a coupon good for #ScarySavings at Walmart.   If you’re one of those people that were planning to pick up Halloween treats on your way home from work one day this week, Don’t miss your last chance to get this special Halloween coupon for $2.00 off (1) 6pk. 8oz cans or (2) 2L of participating soda and (2) bags of Mars® candy.  This […]

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Enemy of Debt - Coupon Alert: Last Minute Savings On Halloween Treats! #ScarySavings

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If you’re like me, you wait until the last minute to pick up the treats to be handed out on Halloween eve.  Sometimes the early bird gets the worm, but in this case procrastinators get the opportunity to use a coupon good for #ScarySavings at Walmart.   If you’re one of those people that were planning to pick up Halloween treats on your way home from work one day this week, Don’t miss your last chance to get this special Halloween coupon for $2.00 off (1) 6pk. 8oz cans or (2) 2L of participating soda and (2) bags of Mars® candy.  This is the perfect combo for any spooky Halloween event.  Click on the image and save! *If coupon does not work on Google Chrome, you will need to use a different browser to print it (e.x. Firefox, Safari, Internet Explorer).  #CollectiveBias

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Finding a Cell Phone Promotion By Accident Saved Us $250 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/finding-a-cell-phone-promotion-by-accident-saved-us-250/ http://www.enemyofdebt.com/finding-a-cell-phone-promotion-by-accident-saved-us-250/#comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 10:27:53 +0000 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/?p=15412 Enemy of Debt - Finding a Cell Phone Promotion By Accident Saved Us $250

If you want to chop down the price of your cell phone bill, there are about a dozen ways to do it.   If you want to cut the price of the monthly service you could go with a no contract provider, you could sign up for only talk and text, or you could even just pay for minutes. It all depends upon what you want out of your cell phone service.   Additionally, the cost of phones varies widely based upon brand name and capability. A person can pick up a basic phone from any mobile phone provider inexpensively or a […]

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Enemy of Debt - Finding a Cell Phone Promotion By Accident Saved Us $250

Cell Phone

Image courtesy of stock images at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

If you want to chop down the price of your cell phone bill, there are about a dozen ways to do it.   If you want to cut the price of the monthly service you could go with a no contract provider, you could sign up for only talk and text, or you could even just pay for minutes. It all depends upon what you want out of your cell phone service.   Additionally, the cost of phones varies widely based upon brand name and capability. A person can pick up a basic phone from any mobile phone provider inexpensively or a used smart phone can be had for a pretty good deal online.

But what if you’re part of the segment of the population that enjoy technology, like the service and coverage available from a major carrier, and want to have a phone that at least is in the ball park of the latest and greatest? Do those people simply have to resign themselves to the fact that they’ll be paying an arm and a leg for it without hope of a good deal from time to time?

 

Wrong. We stumbled across a great discount on a cell phone upgrade completely by accident.

My son informed us that the wifi on his phone was no longer working. He had done some research and found that this sort of thing happens from time to time on Apple iPhones.   This poses a bit of a problem, because without wifi access, 100% of his data usage would come out of our data plan. If you’ve ever had someone stream a movie to a mobile device while traveling, you know how fast the data meter can spin. He has had his phone, which he paid for himself, for several years without losing it or causing any damage to it.   Add in the fact that he’s getting straight A’s in school, we decided we would investigate getting him a new phone.

We walked into the AT&T store just shy of noon, and were greeted warmly by the manager saying he would be with us in just a minute. A few minutes later he came over and immediately starting apologizing. I don’t know what was going on with the staffing at that store, but he said he was extremely short staffed, and the wait time to talk to someone was 3-4 hours.

There was no way I was waiting hours to talk to someone about a cell phone, especially on Football Sunday.

As we drove home, we decided to stop into BestBuy and see what they could do for us.  As we shelled the BestBuy employee with questions, we found out that there were two promotions going on that may be of interest to us:

  • Each new ATT Next Plan activation is eligible for a $50 BestBuy Gift Card.
  • Upgrading any smart phone to a Galaxy S5 receives a $200 BestBuy Gift Card.

My son’s eyes lit up, as he wanted to switch from iPhone to an Android phone.

We had to pay for the sales tax, plus we required him to have an Otter Box case on his phone to protect it. Those two items totaled close to $100, which we paid for with the gift cards. We walked out of the store with a new Galaxy S5 for my son, with a case, and about $150 of BestBuy credit. Of course, we also got a monthly bill of $27. We’ll initially make the payments, but as soon as he turns 16 in January and gets a part-time job he will inherit those payments.  It’s never a good sale if it makes you buy something you weren’t going to buy anyway.  The special promotion was on the phone my son really wanted, so it we got a great discount on the product we were looking to purchase anyway.

Cheaper plans and phones could be found. But if you have room in your budget, and the latest and greatest cell phone is something you want to spend your money on, it’s worth it to shop around even if you’re going to stick with your same provider. If you match prices and kickbacks between different authorized retailers, you might just save a little bit of cash.

Have you ever saved money on a new mobile phone because of a promotion at a retailer? How much did you save?

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I Love You Like A Blogger Roundup – 10/24 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/i-love-you-like-a-blogger-roundup-1024/ http://www.enemyofdebt.com/i-love-you-like-a-blogger-roundup-1024/#comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 09:39:30 +0000 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/?p=15398 Enemy of Debt - I Love You Like A Blogger Roundup – 10/24

My daughter wanted to have a Halloween party with her friends, so we’ve been busily helping her with the planning and collecting the needed supplies.   We’ll be decorating the garage and doing prep work tonight, and her party is tomorrow evening.  There will be some special treats, a decked out garage, music, and pumpkin carving.   As we have little discussions here or there to put the finishing touches on the party, I can see a little gleam in her eye.  I know that look, it’s the same one her mother gets when she’s planning an event.  I’m really looking forward […]

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Enemy of Debt - I Love You Like A Blogger Roundup – 10/24

fistpumpMy daughter wanted to have a Halloween party with her friends, so we’ve been busily helping her with the planning and collecting the needed supplies.   We’ll be decorating the garage and doing prep work tonight, and her party is tomorrow evening.  There will be some special treats, a decked out garage, music, and pumpkin carving.   As we have little discussions here or there to put the finishing touches on the party, I can see a little gleam in her eye.  I know that look, it’s the same one her mother gets when she’s planning an event.  I’m really looking forward to her and her friends having a good time.

Maybe I can even get them to fist pump…..

 

Posts That Make Me Fist Pump

Shameless Self Promotion

Other fist-pumping posts I wrote, or appeared in this week from around the personal finance blogosphere:

TeamEOD Was Recently Included In The Following Carnivals

Carnival of MoneyPros hosted by Penny Thots
Yakezie Carnival hosted by Loans Lifestyle
Lifestyle Carnival hosted by Business Action For Water
Carnival of Money hosted by Carnival of Money

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Save Money, and Your Credit Using FICO Score Watch http://www.enemyofdebt.com/save-money-and-your-credit-using-fico-score-watch/ http://www.enemyofdebt.com/save-money-and-your-credit-using-fico-score-watch/#comments Wed, 22 Oct 2014 09:32:18 +0000 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/?p=15391 Enemy of Debt - Save Money, and Your Credit Using FICO Score Watch

Please note that a commercial relationship exists between our site and FICO® that could include FICO providing us with product and other forms of payment. The views of the author(s) herein do not necessarily reflect the views of FICO. FICO is not a credit repair organization as defined under federal or state law, including the Credit Repair Organizations Act, and does not provide “credit repair” services or advice or assistance regarding “rebuilding” or “improving” credit records, credit history or credit ratings. I logged into the myFICO website, and within a few clicks I was staring at my current financial state […]

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Enemy of Debt - Save Money, and Your Credit Using FICO Score Watch

myfico-myficoPlease note that a commercial relationship exists between our site and FICO® that could include FICO providing us with product and other forms of payment. The views of the author(s) herein do not necessarily reflect the views of FICO. FICO is not a credit repair organization as defined under federal or state law, including the Credit Repair Organizations Act, and does not provide “credit repair” services or advice or assistance regarding “rebuilding” or “improving” credit records, credit history or credit ratings.

I logged into the myFICO website, and within a few clicks I was staring at my current financial state through the eyes of a creditor. All my outstanding credit accounts including my mortgage, my car loans, and a small credit card balance.

Wait, I shouldn’t have a balance on any credit card!

Digging a little deeper, I discovered the account in question was one that we had recently paid in full. There had been some residual interest applied after our last payment was made. I honestly don’t know if I didn’t get a bill from the creditor, or if it had come but I discarded it because I assumed the balance was zero. One late charge had already been applied, and the next payment due date was within a few days. I quickly paid the balance and put an entry on my todo list to make sure the balance stayed at zero.

I could see that did not have a blemish on my credit report, thankfully.

Being able to monitor your credit report, and your FICO scores is an invaluable service in today’s financial world. While I should have paid closer attention to my statement, or made sure I checked my account online, FICO Score Watch added a new component to my system of checks and balances that helped me catch a mistake that could have cost me dearly down the road. #myFICOInsider

I thought of the implications of how such a mistake, if left uncaught for months, could affect an important financial move for our family. I thought of how we had refinanced our home earlier this year, and how important it had been to have favorable FICO Scores to get the very best interest rates. Such a mistake would have not only racked up late charges and put blemishes on our credit report, but likely cost us thousands of dollars in interest over the life of our mortgage.

I thought of all the security breaches at retailers that I shop at during the past year. My wife is a bit shy to use our debit card anywhere in fear that our information and our identity could be stolen. With a tools like FICO Score Watch, we would know very quickly if someone was attempting to trash our credit.

Do you use a credit monitoring service?  Has it ever caught anything for you?

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Motivational Monday: Mistakes Pave The Way To A Greater Success http://www.enemyofdebt.com/motivational-monday-mistakes-pave-the-way-to-a-greater-success/ http://www.enemyofdebt.com/motivational-monday-mistakes-pave-the-way-to-a-greater-success/#comments Mon, 20 Oct 2014 13:11:59 +0000 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/?p=15384 Enemy of Debt - Motivational Monday: Mistakes Pave The Way To A Greater Success

I caught a segment on a popular morning news program in which the CEO of Google was being interviewed. The line of questioning centered on the type of potential employee Google typically looks for and the kinds of ideas that would catch the eye of Google as something they would want to pursue. The CEO gave the example two potential ideas, one that would result in a car that could get 50 miles to the gallon, and one that would get 500 miles to the gallon. While the first idea would be more easily attainable and very useful in the […]

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Enemy of Debt - Motivational Monday: Mistakes Pave The Way To A Greater Success

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Image courtesy of pakorn at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I caught a segment on a popular morning news program in which the CEO of Google was being interviewed. The line of questioning centered on the type of potential employee Google typically looks for and the kinds of ideas that would catch the eye of Google as something they would want to pursue.

The CEO gave the example two potential ideas, one that would result in a car that could get 50 miles to the gallon, and one that would get 500 miles to the gallon. While the first idea would be more easily attainable and very useful in the world today, they would be much more interested in the second idea. Even if they failed, the CEO asked the interviewer to think about all they would learn simply by trying to achieve a seemingly impossible task.

Thinking that through for a minute, I realized the genius of that perspective. Imagine if two teams of people worked on each of these ideas. The first team achieved 50 miles to the gallon. The second one only reaching half of their goal by coming up with a method to achieve 250 miles to the gallon.

Which one is the greater success?

About a year ago, I began training for my fourth marathon. I spent months doing speed training, extending the length of my runs, and experimenting with refuel and rehydration techniques. I had done things in this round of training I had never done before.

I fell far short of my time goal, but it was not a failure.

Over the first thirteen years of our marriage, my wife and I accumulated over $109,000 of credit card debt. We were on the brink of financial ruin, and had compromised my family’s future financial security. Yet I would not consider that a failure either.

Both of these scenarios are certainly mistakes. With my marathon training I had misjudged the impact an extra 20 pounds on my frame would have on my conditioning. I also hadn’t trained at the pace needed to achieve my goal. With our finances, my wife and I did not communicate about our finances, and we simply treated credit cards as a resource to get what we wanted, whenever we wanted.

Mistakes only become failures when you refuse to learn from them.

In both of these instances, I have learned from my mistake. As I begin training for my next marathon in June of 2015, I am putting an emphasis on losing weight and paying attention to the pace at which I’m running. My wife and I communicate constantly about our finances, and make decisions together regarding how our money is spent.

We also take forward the knowledge we gained from our mistake.

Just as the knowledge of a team that set out to build a car that could achieve 500 miles to the gallon, but could only squeeze out an efficiency of 250mpg, our experiences have given us useful knowledge that we can build upon.

With my marathon training I know exactly how often my body needs some fuel and hydration to prevent running out of energy and hitting the infamous wall. With our finances, we know the effects that lack of communication and consistent overspending can have, even if we have learned that lesson more than once.

Set your goals high.

I’m very adamant that my goal for my June of 2015 is to qualify for the Boston Marathon. It’s a lofty goal, and will require me to shave 50 minutes off my best marathon time.   If I train and achieve my goal, that will be spectacular. But if I train and shave 25 minutes off my personal best it will still be the best time I’ve achieved by far.

Regarding my finances, I actually have a list of goals both short term and long term that I want to accomplish. They are also very lofty goals.  If I achieve all of them, I will have complete and undisputed financial freedom. If I only achieve some of them, I  will simply be well taken care of for the rest of my life.

Are you setting your goals high enough? Are you learning from your mistakes?

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How to Get Ahead If You’re Living Paycheck to Paycheck (Part 2) http://www.enemyofdebt.com/how-to-get-ahead-paycheck-to-paycheck/ http://www.enemyofdebt.com/how-to-get-ahead-paycheck-to-paycheck/#comments Sun, 19 Oct 2014 19:38:45 +0000 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/?p=15382 Enemy of Debt - How to Get Ahead If You’re Living Paycheck to Paycheck (Part 2)

In the first article in the series, I covered eight things that might cause you to end up trapped in a paycheck to paycheck life. In this second post, I’m going to show you a few things you can do to get your finances under control, stop spending more than you make, and end the paycheck to paycheck cycle for good. If you read the last article, at this point you’ve probably figured out some of the top reasons why you’re struggling financially. Once you understand those reasons, I explained that it was important to get your mindset right and […]

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Enemy of Debt - How to Get Ahead If You’re Living Paycheck to Paycheck (Part 2)

In the first article in the series, I covered eight things that might cause you to end up trapped in a paycheck to paycheck life.

In this second post, I’m going to show you a few things you can do to get your finances under control, stop spending more than you make, and end the paycheck to paycheck cycle for good.

If you read the last article, at this point you’ve probably figured out some of the top reasons why you’re struggling financially.

Once you understand those reasons, I explained that it was important to get your mindset right and take a deep, honest look at what is really causing the problem.

Those are the two things you absolutely must do before moving on to the strategies below that will help you ultimately solve your problem.

 

4 Tips To End the Paycheck to Paycheck Cycle

Once you’ve reached this point in the process, there are four things you should be doing to get off the paycheck to paycheck treadmill (depending on your situation, you may need to do some or all of them):

  • Put Together a Plan- Lasting change is not going to happen without a solid plan.  Winging it just doesn’t work!  Make a written plan for how you’re going to get out of debt (Here’s how to do that), and then work that plan.  It’s very difficult to change your financial habits if you don’t have a plan.
  • Find Ways to Increase Your Income- Even if you’ve already cut expenses to the bone, sometimes it can still be hard to make ends meet.  The best way to fix that is to find ways to make more money in your present job, start a side gig, get a part time job, or even a combination of these.
  • Get Out of Debt ASAP- Debt is a choice.  It drains away your hard earned money through interest and fees, and prevents you from getting ahead financially.  Doing what it takes to become debt free is the best way to start becoming financially successful.  My get out of debt course can show you how.
  • Do a Monthly Budget- It’s impossible to truly know what you’re spending unless you keep track.  A monthly written budget helps you understand what’s coming in, what’s going out, and allows you to see where the money leaks  A budget is absolutely essential.

 

The Paycheck to Paycheck Life Stinks!

Most of us, especially those in the middle class, have been getting hammered for the last decade or so with stagnating wages and increasing prices.  But that’s no excuse for not being able to succeed financially.

You just have to take massive action and be diligent toward your goals.

You have to become relentless about learning how to overcome the paycheck to paycheck monster and keep it from rearing its ugly head ever again.

IT IS POSSIBLE, AND YOU CAN DO IT!

 

Have you been using any of these strategies to improve your finances?

Leave a comment and tell me what has worked and what hasn’t worked.

 

Resources:

The “How Do You Get Out of Debt?” Series

More Money Won’t Solve Your Problems, Here’s What Actually Works

More Posts on Dealing With Debt

More Posts on Budgeting

More Posts on Money and Behavior

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I Love You Like A Blogger Roundup – 10/17 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/i-love-you-like-a-blogger-roundup-1017/ http://www.enemyofdebt.com/i-love-you-like-a-blogger-roundup-1017/#comments Fri, 17 Oct 2014 14:09:57 +0000 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/?p=15376 Enemy of Debt - I Love You Like A Blogger Roundup – 10/17

The kids are off of school Thursday and Friday of this week so we decided to something fun with them.  We live about an hour south of the Minneapolis/St.Paul metropolitan area, and door to door it’s about 70 minutes to the Mall Of America.  In the middle of the mall is an indoor amusement park called Nickelodeon Universe.  I get all day ride wrist bands at a great discount (about 33% off), which helps with the cost.  We allowed them each to bring one friend, and we spent the day riding rides, checking out a few stores, and then meeting […]

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Enemy of Debt - I Love You Like A Blogger Roundup – 10/17

fistpumpThe kids are off of school Thursday and Friday of this week so we decided to something fun with them.  We live about an hour south of the Minneapolis/St.Paul metropolitan area, and door to door it’s about 70 minutes to the Mall Of America.  In the middle of the mall is an indoor amusement park called Nickelodeon Universe.  I get all day ride wrist bands at a great discount (about 33% off), which helps with the cost.  We allowed them each to bring one friend, and we spent the day riding rides, checking out a few stores, and then meeting friends and family that live in the area for dinner at one of our favorite Italian Restaurants.  It was a fantastic day, but now I’m ready to spend the rest of the weekend just lounging.

What do you have going on this weekend?  I hope it includes some fist pumping….

Posts That Make Me Fist Pump

Shameless Self Promotion

Other fist-pumping posts I wrote, or appeared in this week from around the personal finance blogosphere:

 

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Sunday Afternoon #LaundryBliss With Purex Laundry Detergent http://www.enemyofdebt.com/sunday-afternoon-laundry-bliss-with-purex-laundry-detergent/ http://www.enemyofdebt.com/sunday-afternoon-laundry-bliss-with-purex-laundry-detergent/#comments Wed, 15 Oct 2014 11:06:17 +0000 http://www.enemyofdebt.com/?p=15351 Enemy of Debt - Sunday Afternoon #LaundryBliss With Purex Laundry Detergent

Laundry was on my mind as I was running errands last Sunday morning, because I knew I was out of laundry detergent. I stopped by Target just as they unlocked the doors, and surveyed the laundry detergent aisle for the best deal. I found a bottle of Purex laundry detergent boasting 10% more product than usual, advertising the potential of washing 90 loads for a cost of $7.99. That’s less than 9 cents per load! As I was standing in the checkout lane, anxious to get started with the day’s work, I thought about how I could have purchased my […]

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Enemy of Debt - Sunday Afternoon #LaundryBliss With Purex Laundry Detergent

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Laundry was on my mind as I was running errands last Sunday morning, because I knew I was out of laundry detergent. I stopped by Target just as they unlocked the doors, and surveyed the laundry detergent aisle for the best deal. I found a bottle of Purex laundry detergent boasting 10% more product than usual, advertising the potential of washing 90 loads for a cost of $7.99.

That’s less than 9 cents per load!

As I was standing in the checkout lane, anxious to get started with the day’s work, I thought about how I could have purchased my Purex Laundry detergent online. I could have picked it up at my convenience, potentially saving me some time. #CollectiveBias

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The work week is a whirlwind of busy between work, playing taxi for various kid activities, trying to get to the gym and just keeping the house generally running smoothly. For that exact reason I dedicate time on the weekend to make sure that I’m as prepared for the upcoming week as possible. Before I go to bed Sunday night, I have the following tasks complete so that they don’t need to be done during the week:

  • Meals planned and groceries purchased
  • Dishes washed and placed back in the cupboards
  • Laundry done and put away

When I got home, I dove into the last item on my list. I rounded up the family’s laundry, sorted it, and began the process of conquering the week’s mountain of laundry. I knew the situation was critical when I heard my twelve year old daughter proclaim from her room, “DAAAAAD, I have nothing to wear!”

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I worked at a dizzying pace transferring loads from the washer to the dryer, and then reloading the washer; each load getting a cap full of Purex Crystals fabric softener to leave our clean laundry soft to the touch, and smelling fresh and clean. Each dried load was brought to the spare bedroom for folding and sorting into one of three baskets, one for my son, one for my daughter, and one for my wife and I.

When the last load was complete about mid-afternoon, the baskets were delivered to the appropriate bedroom. My daughter’s eyes lit up as she jumped right into putting her laundry away and laying out the outfits she wanted to wear each day for the week.

I think she may have picked up some of my desire to plan ahead.

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Now that the rest of the family was happily putting away their clean laundry, I could sit down in a state of #LaundryBliss and enjoy hours upon hours doing what Sunday afternoons in Fall are meant for: watching football!

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When do you do your family’s laundry?  What is your idea of laundry bliss?

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