This is something I struggle with. I am a shopper at heart and love the thrill I get from buying new things. This has lead to the accumulation of some debt. It is not from student loans or anything it is from silly, really unnecessary purchases. I opened my first credit card in college and it has been a slippery slope since then. I have paid off my debt several times (thanks to my parents, selling my first house, and 401k) but it still manages to get charged back up. I am not one of those people who charge up a card and pay off the balance in full every month even though I wish I was. That is the right way to manage a credit card. I charge and then sometimes only pay the minimum (gasp). Things need to change.
I think today's society has made it hard for people to live within their means. Credit cards and lines of credit are so easy to attain. Why not charge it? I wish credit cards were never invented and that way people just had to live off the money they made. How do we really ever know if someone can afford something or if they are living outside of their means by charging it. The blog world and social media make this especially hard. Everyone is always blogging about and showing off their fabulous houses, amazing clothes, gadgets, cars, the list goes on and on. It is hard not to compare yourself and not to try and "keep up with the Jones." You start to resent what you have and want more.
I am guilty of comparing myself to others. I used to love our house and now it feels so cramped and small to me and I want a bigger one. I keep seeing friends move into big nice houses and I want that too. It makes me envious and that is not a good way to live. Some people would consider my house a palace because they don't even have a roof over their head. I am lucky to have a house to live it wheter it is small is not. I am always wanting to buy all the fabulous clothes I see these bloggers in, but really I have not one but two closets filled to the brim. I have to ask myself do I really need more or is this turning into greed?
Since having Sterling I have thought about this stuff alot more. and honestly I have cut back on my shopping since then but I still shop alot. My child's future depends on how we manage our money. I want him to be able to attend any college he wants to (although I won't be sad if he gets a scholarship). Do I still charge things, yes I do. Not gonna lie we live on commissions, no set salary from Matt's work so there are some months we have to use the card for gas and groceries to get by. Other months we are more than fine. and we would be fine all the time if we had a good savings account and no debt.
The point of this is, I want to become a responsible adult. I want to think really hard before I buy things and I want to pay off my debt. I am thinking of starting Dave Ramsey's plan. I already own the book, Financial Peace, but have yet to read it. Has anyone else used his plan and does it work?
The other side of this is I want to be grateful and happy for exactly what I have in this moment and not desire more or covet things others have. I know I am lucky no doubt but sometimes I forget to thank God for all the blessings in my life. Each night after I read my devotional I have been making a point to thank God for all that I have. Yes it is not as much as some people, but really how much do we all need? And all of this around us. Its not what is important. Its the people in our lives and memories we create that are important.
Starting May 1 I am going to attempt to start a budget and pay down some debt. I will let you guys know what works and what doesn't if you are interested. I also welcome any tips or advice you peeps have. This doesn't mean I am going cold turkey and not shopping at all, it just means I am going to really think out every purchase and only use cash no credit. I will still blog about pretty things I just won't buy all of them! Oh and lets all make a point to be thankful for what we have.
Have a great weekend. That was your dose of heavy thoughts for the weekend- back to regular mindless posting Monday.
P.S I am keeping the Rodan + Fields Giveaway open thru the weekend. I will announce the winner Monday. You can still enter HERE. Now I am off to shop before I start my budget:)