These are my confessions…

It’s that dreaded time of the month again

Time to pay my credit card bill. Immediately guilt rushes past me as I scan the items on the bill. Did I really NEED that? If I have to ask, then I already know the answer. I am a shopaholic who admittedly has trouble deciphering between needs and wants. More often than not I get confused and rely on my credit…until it comes to collect!

The Cost of Debt

I have two credit cards currently with balances that total about $2,000. One thing for me was that if I was going to be in debt (by choice) then I would at least keep it manageable. I transferred the balance of one card to my second and that’s when I fell for the “zero percent APR” for a limited time offer. While I was ecstatic to see that my primary card had been paid down significantly, I also knew in the back of mind that if purchased items with my second card I wouldn’t have to worry about interest, and I could just pay it off like usual. The truth is that while I stopped spending on the first card, my faulty reasoning got me in trouble with the second. I ended up going over the limit and increasing my debt. This was not my goal.

“Free Food if you sign up today!”

When I was a freshman at college, every now and then while walking through campus you would see a huddle of students crowded around three guys with clipboards. “Sign up for Citi: Student Advantage Card today and get a free cheesesteak! . I sure was hungry. Needless to say I signed up for two cards, one was for the t-shirt and the other for the food. Off the advice of my mom, I kept the cards for emergencies.

Recovering after the multiple emergencies

In my experience, other than paying for my $250 graduate entrance exam, I have not purchased anything on my card that was an ultimately necessary. Approach your card(s) with this idea in mind: If I can’t afford it today, and it is not an absolute necessity. then I probably will not be able to afford it tomorrow, when the bill comes. Charging items became a downward spiral for me.

Using the calculator below I’ve calculated that I now need to pay more than $300 a month to have this bill paid off in six months. I’ve chosen six months because I wish to purchase a house in six months and having zero credit card debt will assist in helping with my credit score.


Have I learned my lesson? Of course. Though I recently had a minor setback that resulted in me taking scissors to my cards, I now approach them with a different mindset. One that actually causes me to think twice about my desired purchases. In order to help me cope, I’ve decided to have a weekly ‘Save or Splurge’ post where we evaluate the feigned importance of the item.

If you’d like to participate send a picture with a description, price and why you want this item to somoney@missnewmoney.com.

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