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Thursday, October 9, 2008

Delete impulse spending from your life.

Time to fess up:

1. Do you, your spouse or partner continually spend more than you earn. in other words - does your household expenses always exceed your household income?

2. Month after month when your credit card bill/s arrives in your letterbox are you afraid to open the envelope because you know in your heart the message it carries is not good? Did I really spend that much?

3. When you open your wardrobe do you find yourself wondering if you really need enough outfits and shoes to supply a small town?

4. Are you a victim of gadget-itis? Do you constantly rush out to grab the latest gadget on the retailer's shelf before it even collects a speck of dust?

5. Do you window shop often and end up bringing home a purchase of something you never knew you needed until you saw it displayed in the shop window?

A "yes" to any of the above means you are a victim of impulse spending - or should I say - you have allowed yourself to become a victim of impulse spending. Another very inaccurate description is "retail therapy". It's an action that for a small amount of time makes you feel better upon purchase of the new "thing". It can be much more accurately described as "self harm" or a form of self abuse.

When you are indulging in this sort of spending you are putting on hold so many far more important matters. Think in terms of retirement, a long needed vacation, a new car, financial security, the dream home. Overcome this by the formulating of medium and long term goals. Write them down. Read them every day. Pull out your goals list and read over them when you find yourself looking longingly into the shop window at the latest "must have or die".

Advertisers blitz us 24/7/365. You will never escape the pressure to buy. If you are not careful your relationships with loved ones will also suffer as your finances dwindle. You will feel miserable and they will know something is wrong.

A great solution is to always sleep on it. One night minimum. A week is best. The gloss of the "must have" usually goes by then.

Always shop from a prepared list. This automatically narrows your options down and will help enormously to keep you on the right path. As far as possible always pay cash - deliberately leave your credit cards at home. This limits the amount you can spend at one time.

Empower yourself towards a much simpler lifestyle. There are so many rewards for doing so.

"We are ruined, not by what we really want, but by what we think we do: therefore never go abroad in search of your wants. If they be real wants, they will come home in search of you; for he that buys what he does not want, will soon want what he cannot buy." - Charles Caleb Colton

"If you know how to spend less than you get, you have the philosopher's stone." - Benjamin Franklin

A must read - "The True Cost of Happiness" by Stacey Tisdale

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