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How To Kick Your Worst Money Habits

March 11, 2014

Ok, I’ll admit it…I love shoes. Can a woman ever have too many pairs of shoes? My head knows the answer but my heart doesn’t want to admit it.

Habits (like my love of buying shoes) are part of human nature and they are incredibly powerful. The good ones help us understand, manage and cope with a complex world. The bad ones; well, that’s another story.bigstock-Pile-of-various-female-shoes-29798192

Often, we may not even realize our bad habits until someone points them out to us. I don’t have more shoes than my other women friends, do I? Surprisingly, my recent shoe inventory revealed multiple pairs with the price tags still on many months after their purchase. Other shoes in my closet appeared never to have been worn at all, given the amount of dust on their boxes. I need to fess up- I CAN do better!

“Change might not be fast and it isn’t always easy. But with time and effort, almost any habit can be reshaped.”
– Charles Duhigg  

In his best selling book The Power of Habit, Charles Duhigg, paints a fascinating picture of our habits- how they’re formed and how to change the bad ones while holding on to the good ones. This book is a great read -a wonderful mix of science and stories that will get you thinking about why you do what you do over time.

Another much shorter read focused specifically on money habits, is this article and infographic from LearnVest; 3 Simple Steps To Help Change Bad Money Habits. Have a look and give these tips a try on your own worst money habit.

I’m happy to say that my shoe purchases are now well under control. But I must stay vigilant. I can’t take all the credit for success- I rarely wear high heals anymore as I get older and need less variety now as I’ve scaled back on work. But I do deserve some cudos- fewer shoe buying sprees, better outfit planning (mix & matching) and a self imposed shoe purchase limit- both quantity and dollars. Funny, I’m not really missing the extra shoes and am liking a few more dollars in my wallet.

Do you know where your money goes each month? Can you identify “wasted money” i.e. things you spend money on that you don’t really care about? Have you made room for savings and debt repayment in your monthly budget? Whatever your bad money habits, know that you are not alone. I have never met anyone who didn’t have some habits they wanted to change. The sooner you admit them, the easier it is to take control and make change.

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