Change your financial behavior by taking a good look at how to you spend and save.
When you think every day about how you wish you could keep money in your bank account or you wish you could just get one more extra check, it's time to start assessing your financial situation. Most of the time we don't live within our means or we simply don't make the right choices when dealing with our money. So how can you get your finances back in order and finally start saving? Especially when your job doesn't pay that well and you're knee-high in debt?
The first thing you should do is take a clear look at what you have leftover after taxes. This would be your net worth. Next, what do you have leftover after all of your bills including the debt you are paying down? You want a realistic picture of this so that you can see how you are financially. This will help you to start making some changes.
The second and most important thing you will want to do is pay yourself first. Take at least 1%-10% of your net pay and put it in a high interest-bearing account. There are several online banks you can utilize that will get you in the right direction. Online banks will offer you a better percentage than a brick and mortar bank. If you are a T-Mobile customer they offer a debit card that offers a whopping 4% APY!
You need to figure out if you can afford your current lifestyle. Questions you need to ask yourself should be about affording where you live now, do you really need that extra home phone and cable, do you need to eat out as often, can you afford that car with the insurance that comes along, how much food are you buying and how much are you wasting, could you move somewhere cheaper and possibly find a better paying job? Sometimes we don't want to do certain things like moving but being complacent in a place that is putting you in debt will only do you more harm than good. Also remember, just because you make more doesn't mean spend more.
As was mentioned above, it's necessary to get a high interest-bearing savings account. You will want to have one as a regular savings account, an emergency account, and one for vacations, birthdays, etc. If you can't do all of that right now while you fix your financial situation, you still should put aside money in your one savings account.
If you have credit cards and they have been nothing but bad news for you, maybe you should consider only having one or two cards with purchases like your utilities or subscription services. You are going to want to pay your credit cards off and whatever other debt you have so that you can start rebuilding your credit again. You can even automate your expenses using your credit cards.
Last but not least, know that you are not the only one who has fallen by the wayside financially. Most people make mistakes financially but it's up to us to learn from them and fix the problems so that we can enjoy life instead of worrying about how we are going to make it the next day.