Don’t Swipe the Small Stuff
In a recent New York Times article, www.nytimes.com/2016/09/10/your-money/a-little-nagging-can-reduce-credit-card-debt, researchers found that some infrequent and subtle reminders about the follies of credit card debt helped reduce the amount that people spent each month. Assuming that this would work for you, are you willing to make some changes in order to reduce your monthly spending?
Experts agree that people are more reluctant to part with their cash money than they are to swipe a card. If you are having trouble paying your cards off in full or if you are surprised how much you spend in a month, try withdrawing your petty cash ahead of time. Use only cash for incidental purchases under $20 and, when your petty cash is gone, stop spending. If you find that you blow through a month’s cash too quickly, only withdraw what you need for a week and do your best to be more disciplined.
You may find that you adjust to this system quite easily, but you will not notice results unless you get family members on board. Discuss the plan and allow each individual to have a bit to spend. Let them see how quickly their money disappears and make it a family goal to reduce the monthly expenditures. You may find that you make fewer stops and have more time once the whole family decides against small, unplanned purchases.
Remember your goals
Set a reminder on your phone, computer, or write it on the calendar, to check your credit card balances mid-month. This will refresh your memory as to how much money you already owe, and might help curb the impulse to go spend more. If you haven’t already, calculate how much you will save by paying off your credit cards faster at http://financialmentor.com/calculator/debt-snowball-calculator