I often hear people getting discouraged by the Total Money Makeover system because it's quite aggressive. The steps seem daunting and takes an extremely long time to complete. It can often feel like you have to put your life on hold until it's done.
If you are ready to get your finances in order, the first thing you need to do is give yourself a financial reality check.
A few years ago I was at a friend's house, working on finances of course, and I noticed her desk. It was a leaning bookcase desk that I had admired for years from Crate & Barrel. I thought about buying that desk many times but the $437 price tag kept me back.
In college I had an expensive habit of buying cheap clothes. Oh this shirt is $5? Buying it! This jacket is $20? Getting it! I ended up with a closet full of cheap ugly clothing, and spending a ton of money to boot!
Today I decided to dip my toes into the world of zero-sum budgeting. Meaning, I have created a budget AND transfer system that uses every dollar of my paycheck.