One of the most important bits of advice I can give to anyone else who is trying to build wealth – pay off debt, save more…spend less…any of these things or all three. TRACK WHAT YOU ARE DOING! Why? because it is a loooooong road sometimes. There will be times when you are certain you are doing horribly and that you haven’t made any progress. Overspending, under-saving. But if you track and periodically come back to the numbers, you can see your progress and, I promise you, it’s not as bad as you think.
Two times in our lives we have had reality smack us in the face when it came to realizing how much money a month we were spending on food. The first time was when we first discovered Dave Ramsey years and years ago, and the second time was last year when we discovered the FIRE Community (Financial Independence/Retire Early). I thought I had it all together when it came to our food budget. I knew all the rules. I used to lead Financial Peace classes for Goodness Sake! I was careful about our spending. When we made the commitment last year to begin saving for retirement I didn’t know where we were going to get the extra money to do so. So, I began cutting expenses wherever I could. Imagine my shock when I took a good hard look at our banks statements and realized we were actually spending more than double what we had budgeted every month for food. Whoopsie-doodle…..life had certainly crept back up on us and we didn’t even realize it.
Payday lenders and title loan companies are Sharks.
You must train your brain that every time you drive by one of these lenders or see one of their commercials to hear the Jaws theme. They are predators and they prey on people who are afraid they can’t make it to next pay day.