7 Spending Rules to Stop Impulsive Spending and Eliminate Debt

Are you trying to stop impulsive spending, eliminate debt, or trying to save more money?

Do you have guilt about your spending or feel remorse after you make certain purchases? Is it difficult to say no when it comes to buying things for yourself, friends, or family, to the detriment of your personal finances?

You are not alone

If so, you are not alone! And I want you to know that there is a way out of the darkness of debt and overspending, and into the light of personal wealth and financial independence.

We live in a world where billions of dollars each year are spent on advertising and research to discover more ways to get you to spend more of your money.

Money in the bank equals freedom

In world full of noise asking you to say yes and spend, I want you to say no and save. When you have money in the bank, you have more freedom and choices in your life. This means that you can create a life of design, and one that is aligned with your definition of success, not the world’s.

When you can tune out the noise of the world that is constantly tugging on you to buy more and more, and tune into yourself and your desires, you are on the path to debt freedom.

Spending rules will help you save more money and eliminate debt

You can do this by following a few, key, spending rules. These connect your mindset to your behavior in the moment, and keep you from spending money on things you don’t need (excess stuff), so that you have more money for what you do need (freedom and choices).

It wasn’t that long ago that I was caught up in this cycle of spending, feeling out of control, and wanting to feel more ease and flow when it came to my money. I wanted to feel empowered and on track to reach my financial goals, but the temptation to spend was real!

My spending rules

Enter my spending rules. Use these to eliminate your debt, save, and reach financial independence.

1. Don’t spend time in places where you can spend.

If you are between meetings, or have some time to kill, do it in a park, a library, or somewhere you cannot spend money. If you want to become debt free, you must cultivate an environment that supports that, so stay away from shopping malls, coffee shops, retail stores, and anywhere else that you will be tempted to spend. Keep a book in your car or purse, and pull it out when you have some time to waste.

2. What you buy MUST be preplanned.

This means no impulsive spending. If you want to buy anything at all that is non-essential, then it should be put on your budget at least one month in advance. This allows you time to make sure you can afford it. As a rule of thumb, each month you should save twenty percent of your net income. So you can afford it when you have the money left over to buy it after you have saved.

3. Wait 72 hours.

If you see something that you like, and it is not in your budget already, then wait 72 hours to buy it. This allows you to make sure you can afford it (meaning you can still save 20% of your net income in the next thirty days) and it ensures that it’s not an impulsive purchase. If you are still thinking about it after 72 hours, and you can afford, then you can buy it.

4. You have to LOVE it.

Anything you wear on your body, or bring into your home, must bring you joy. In other words, you have to love it. Otherwise, it’s a waste of your valuable resources (money). If you don’t absolutely, positively, love it, then don’t buy it.

5. Think it forward.

What will happen if you make this purchase? How will you feel? How will it impact your budget? Will you still be able to save twenty percent of your net income? Are you still going to want it in one year? Think through the consequences or rewards of spending and make sure it’s a worthy purchase.

6. Leave your wallet in the car or at home.

If you are going somewhere you will be tempted to buy, leave your wallet at home!

7. Know for certain you are getting the best price.

Take time to research the prices of what you want to buy. Always make sure that you are getting the best deal. Research promo codes and offer to pay cash if that can reduce the price.

These spending rules helped me eliminate $67,000 in debt in three years. If you need help creating a financial plan, reach out and let’s find out how I can help you reach your financial goals!

Holly Morphew, AFC® is personal finance expert, coach, writer, and speaker based in Denver, CO. She is the CEO + Founder of Financial Impact, a specialized financial coaching practice that helps career-driven entrepreneurs and professionals create personal wealth and financial independence. She is the author of Simple Wealth, a #1 best-seller in wealth management, personal transformation, real estate, and women & business. Holly began teaching personal finance in 2006 as a service project with Rotary International, and received the prestigious “Rotarian of the Year” award for her work in financial literacy. As an Accredited Financial Counselor® with the AFCPE, Holly has also been recognized for “Bridging the Gap” for outstanding work in private practice. Her philosophy, “abundance is our natural state” is the core of Financial Impact programs, which help clients bridge behavior and mindset to realize their potential. In addition to personal wealth building, Holly also helps clients start and scale businesses and create new streams of income.

Hi! I’m Holly, the founder of Financial Impact and an award-winning financial coach. I help career-driven leaders and entrepreneurs create wealth, take the stress out of managing money, and feel confident and powerful when it comes to their finances.

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