I admit I have terrible Stuffitis. I stole this phrase from Dave Ramsey, but it really sums it up nicely. If I am going to ever get total control over my finances, I will need to learn to curb this base instinct.
I really have no excuse, I am in marketing, I know what and how the messages are crafted, yet, like the stupid bug who watched his whole clan march into the light, I feel powerless at times! No, I haven't gone off the deep end and charged a bunch of things, but it is really easy to self-justify some of these item as needs as opposed to wants or desires.
Here is how I am making sure to keep Stuffitis at bay:
- Chop up the Credit Cards -It is really easy to say, I might need them for emergency use only! OK, that would be one...many people hold 5+ credit cards. If you have that many emergencies at once you may want to consider upping the insurance.
- Use Cash Whenever Possible - Cash is finite; when it is gone it is gone. Cannot be overspent. Its a physics issue! Yes I am foregoing 2% cash back on left-handed tomatoes, but I don't have the best track record...maybe some day I can trust me enough to do that, not yet though.
- Bad Influences - We all have those friends that are shopping enablers, or parents that say, "Oh come on, $5 won't kill you," or, "You deserve it, you work sooo hard!"
- Track Everything - I guarantee if you haven't been doing this you will be appalled. "$550 on cat toys? We don't have a Cat!"
- Try to Appreciate what you DO Have - This is the toughest, but the most rewarding. Sure I don't have the fanciest car right now, but I also don't have the equivalent of a second house payment either!
I am sure you have your own ways, but if you want to be really in charge of you Personal Finances, I agree with Dave Ramsey...you have to tame your Stuffitis!