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5 Simple Ways to Dig Yourself Out Of Debts and Save Money

A guest post (and good advice) by Amy Lewis

If your debt issues are spiraling out of control and stress is eating you alive, then it’s time to get serious about managing your money. Read on to know the following ways to turn your finances around and make your bank account look better so that debt problems won’t catch you off guard. If required opt for debt settlement programs which might relieve your debt loads considerably.

Keep a track of your swamping debts

Your first and foremost duty is to take into account the huge debt which has been taking its toll on your paycheck and savings . Tally up your financial obligations, monthly income and set expenses such as utility bills. Get clear estimates of your financial obligations by reviewing your bank account statements and credit card bills thoroughly.

Plan effectively

An effective budgeting plan can be your savior in this debt crisis and can help you sail through the troubled water. Formulate a plan based on the amount you afford to allocate in each category of expenses every month. Make sure a certain amount is earmarked for savings in the rainy day and retirement funds. Conduct a weekly budget meeting with your spouse and stay accountable to each other while assessing your budgeting plan and its execution.

Cash instead of credit

Start cutting up your credit cards and use cash or debit card instead for variable expenses, such as groceries and incidentals. You can use a tried and tested trick here. Segregate certain amount of cash to envelopes marked with the categories and spend wisely within the limited means allotted for each category. Remember, don’t close the credit card accounts if you have an outstanding balance or still owe money on those accounts.

Save in an emergency fund

Aim at saving $1,000 in an emergency fund. While saving for unexpected financial urgencies, don’t forget to pay minimums on your other debts. Make sure you have built up a cushion in the bank so that if any emergency turns up, you don’t have to turn to credit cards or pay day loans for help.

Pay off debt

To pay off your outstanding debts follow simple strategies. You can opt for a Dave Ramsey’s method. Here you need to reimburse your smallest debt first. Add a little extra each month to pay off that debt until it’s completely gone. At the same time keep on paying the minimum on your other debts. Once you finish with the smallest one start repeating the same tactic with the next smaller account. Remember, the sooner you pay off the smaller debts, greater amount you free up to pay off the larger ones.

To conclude, follow the above mentioned points and keep your self motivated. Strive hard to get rid of your debts and start saving for your brighter future.

Sheila Harsdorf vs The Boogeyman

“If I could give three words of advice, they would be ‘tell the truth.’ If I got three more words, I’d add: ‘All the time.’ –Randy Pausch, in, The Last Lecture

Here’s the thing we have to remember: Politicians use language.  They search for phrases that will resonate hypnotically within us.  Good political phrases are like gold to politicians, because with them, they can frame the issues and easily influence us.

Take the phrase, “Tax Relief”, for example.  President Bush’s team came up with that one and he made magic every time he used it.  Why?  It totally frames the issue of taxes.  In order for there to be “relief” there has to be an affliction.  It’s a perfect frame.  That one little phrase influenced the way millions of Americans thought about taxes.  Instantly “Taxes” became an “affliction” for which we all needed “relief.”  We haven’t been able to have an intelligent discussion about taxes since

Over the past few months, we’ve heard Harsdorf and Walker refer to the “Special Interests” involved in the recalls, hoping that voters wouldn’t think about who that really is.

It’s a strategy that allows Harsdorf to appear to be protecting tax-payers (who need relief) from something scary — kind of like the boogeyman.  It’s a fear Harsdorf wants you to have.  She needs there to be a “special interests” boogeyman so she can protect you from it.

But remember when you were young, and you thought the boogeyman was in your closet? Remember how foolish you felt when your mom turned on the light and it was just a lump of dirty clothes?

Unlike our moms, Harsdorf wants to keep us in the dark—and very much afraid. That boogeyman she’s calling “special interests”?  Yeah, those “special interests” are the teachers at your school, organizing food drive competitions between classes two weeks before Thanksgiving.  It’s the non-profit broadband provider, WiscNet, bringing affordable internet access to your libraries, public schools and universities.  They’re the police, firefighters, snowplow and ambulance drivers keeping us safe.  It’s the dad across the street, ashamed because his kids’ clothes are too small.  You know these people.

While collecting signatures to recall Harsdorf in my hometown earlier this spring, I was often confronted by angry Harsdorf supporters.  Repeatedly, I was asked where I came from and how much I was getting paid.  They didn’t believe me when I said I was from St. Croix Falls, and was paid nothing. When I told them I was a teacher, many called me a freeloader—or worse.

It shocked me.

Upon reflection, however, it makes perfect sense.  These angry Harsdorf supporters believe and trust her.  They were afraid.  And I was the boogeyman.  My hope is that enough people will turn on the light and begin to wonder—if Harsdorf isn’t telling the truth about special interests, what else is she lying about?