Ever buy anything on ‘layaway’ or any similar arrangement? If you’re handing over money, but not getting the goods, you’re probably doing something wrong. The vendor has your money, but doesn’t have to provide anything in return. You don’t have your money, or whatever it is you’re buying.
Try this: Instead of making payments to a store, make them to yourself. Put the money into an interest bearing account (preferably something like one of the online high-yield savings accounts). It will make you more money while it’s sitting there and when you have enough saved up, go buy what you want.
That assumes, of course, that you have the discipline to leave the money in the savings account and not spend it on something else. If you can’t do that you’d better learn how, or you’re never going to be able to get a handle on your finances.
Everything in moderation, including moderation.
“The wealth required by nature is limited and is easy to procure; but the wealth required by vain ideals extends to infinity.” – Epicurus
“The consequences of anger are often more harmful than the causes of it.” — Marcus Aurelius
Eddie Smith over at Practically Efficient has a nice post about slimming down your unnecessarily large wallet.
I dumped most of my wallet years ago myself, so I’m pretty much with Eddie here, except for one thing. Scans of your auto insurance card? You’re going to hand your iPhone to the mechanics who need to see your insurance before doing the annual state inspection? You’re going to hand your iPhone to a cop who’s pulled you over? You know that that gives him access to everything on your iPhone, right?
I’ll carry a copy of my insurance card, and if I lose it, it only takes a minute to print out a new copy. It’s a small price to pay for keeping everything else safe.