What I'm about to say may make you break out in a cold sweat. CUT UP YOUR CREDIT CARDS. Are you feeling the withdrawal symptoms yet? Credit cards give us a sense of possibility that we just do not have with cash. They allowed me to live beyond my means for years. But I paid for it. Just as an alcoholic can not drink a drop without Relapsing, a credit card junkie should not have any credit cards. Zero. Zilch.
You may argue that in this high tech age. It's Impossible to conduct business without a credit card. True, you can not pay cash when you shop online, and hardly anybody uses personal checks anymore. But if your argument in the flat face of debit cards. A debit card allows you all the convenience of a credit card, with all the limits of your own bank balance. It's an excellent substitute.
If you believe you must have a credit card on hand in case of an emergency, I've got an incredibly creative suggestion for you. Cut up all but one credit card. Then take the lone survivor and drop it in a Tupperware container full of water. Pop the container in the freezer and put your credit card spending on ice! This way you'll have to think about it for several hours if you want to use that card. You're unlikely to thaw this consumer culture ice sculpture to make impulse to buy. But if you have a true emergency, i will be there for you.
My financial planner boyfriend (now husband!) Put me on a spending freeze in my back Debtor days. I was not allowed to spend money on nonessential items. For me, that meant no new clothes, no home decorating, and no dinners out. Not using your cards anymore really is the first step in paying them off Most people who are in a credit card crunch charge their cards to the limit, pay the minimum each month, then spend right up to the limit again until they get their next bill.