Thanks to electronic payments and the internet, spending money has become a very different experience than it used to be. Electronic payments have separated you from your physical cash and the spending constraints imposed by it.
While the internet has given you a way to spend money on things you don't need without ever having to leave your house. And since your money is no longer seen or felt because of the plastic in your wallet, you're never out of money.
However, this is causing you to feel like your money (or lack thereof ) is controlling you rather than you controlling it. Consequently, every month you wind up puzzled scratching your head and asking yourself "Where did it all go?"
Yet, you're not alone.
According to CNBC "The average American has a credit card balance of $6,375." And to add some color this statistic, CNBC goes on to say that "43% of Americans have been carrying this credit card balance for 2 or more years."
Nevertheless, you no longer have to be a part of that 43%. It doesn't have to be this way for you. You can take back your life and improve your financial outlook.
It's never too late to become the captain of your own ship. And with these 4 immediate and sure-fire tips to help you take control of your spending, you'll be able to achieve your goals in no time.
Tip #1: Track Your Spending, Don't Just Monitor It
You may constantly monitor your checking account; yet, chances are you only look to see what your balance is after you've already spent some money.
That's why this is particularly important as a first step.
Monitoring your money after you spend it creates problems like snowballing credit card debt, anxiety, stress, and family fights.
Tracking your spending means that you can figure out where your money is going before you spend it rather than after.
What's more, by actually tracking your expenses you can find trends in your spending and become more aware of what you're spending your money on; Which puts you back in the driver's seat.
Tip #2 Change Your Mindset And Budget
The single most important thing you can do for your financial health is to adopt and foster a healthier attitude towards budgeting.
Budgeting doesn't mean that you're depriving yourself.
On the contrary, it means you are in control. You are putting a purpose behind your money and your purchases.
Budgeting allows you to find comfort in the knowledge that you're in control of your spending in a way that's consistent with your goals, values, and priorities.
Tip #3 Make Saving A Fun Game
Saving money doesn't have to be a painful, brutal experience. In fact, it can be quite fun if you make a game out of it.
For instance, every time you watch your favorite TV show put five dollars in a jar. Or, every time you fill up your gas tank put a dollar in it. You won't miss these small amounts, and over time, they'll add up significantly.
Therefore, if you make the game rules clear and adhere to them you'll surely watch your savings account go up. You can't lose.
Tip #4 Use Credit Cards Carefully
The plastic in your wallet is convenient, however, it may be a little too convenient and may also become very problematic very quickly.
Wise credit usage takes a strong understanding that your credit limit isn't your spending limit.
It also takes a healthy dose of self-discipline.
If you take the steps to effectively manage your credit card spending, credit cards won't become problematic.
In fact, if you time your purchases wisely and take advantage of rewards programs you can actually earn money for using them.
Since spending money has become a very different experience than it used to be, it's important to know why you overspend and what you're overspending on. As a result, having this insight along with implementing these tips will better equip you to resist the irresistible on your next shopping trip.
By simply making small shifts in your habits you gain very big payoffs.