Getting out of debt and identifying why I tend to overspend

I’m currently reading a book called The Willpower Instinct which is where I came across the quantified self website. I’m curious to use this as a tracking journal for exploring my spending habits.

Frankly, I’m not happy with how I spend my money, and using credit card money / getting loans is completely unjustified for me.

My goal is to quit borrowing money whatsoever, but let’s make it 30 days for the sake of the experiment. I would also like to analyze my expenses at the end of the day / every 2 days and check if they were necessary and planned ahead. I already have a habit of keeping track of my expenses, but making changes requires a different habit: sticking up to my budget.

Besides that, I’m going to pay off the debt I’ve already gotten myself into. It’s so big that it’s scary and embarassing. I admit that it was my actions and decisions that led me to my financial situation. Hopefully I’m going to land a new job soon and use the raise wisely (and not start spending more).

The going-debt-free plan looks like this:

  1. Credit card 30k
  2. Short term bank loans 12k
  3. Huge bank loan that I took to pay off my other debts (shouldn’t have done that 'cause I took more than I actually needed, and then I did it again and again which is how I went from 120k to —>) 413k
  4. Debit card overdraft 25k
  5. Borrowed from a friend 209k

I’m currently making 50k a month

I want to learn what triggers make me want to buy something and what can motivate me to stay on track. Identifying the triggers and learning to endure the frustration is potentially going to help me pay off debt. This in turn is going to be a huge stress relief and will help with anxiety coming from living in debt.

No hate please, and friendly tips would be much appreciated!

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The existence of the instinct of Willpower raises very serious doubts.

10 mistakes that prevent us from changing

Would you agree that tracking spending decisions is analytical mind? Have you considered that if an analytical mind change was all that was needed, you would already have enough reason to change to desired behavior?

IMHE as a coach it’s critical to understand your heart/emotional brain for spending decisions. Well, and your physical brain, too. I’d ask questions, such as, “When I bought that (item1) what was I feeling?” “If I drew a Venn diagram of incidents in my life and how I experienced them in the days leading up to buying (item1) what do I observe?” “Are there values driving my decisions?” “Name them.” “Are they values that fit my current life needs and income?” “Could I have these values and wait for (item1)?” “What would waiting look like? (suspect there’d be a long pause here)” And more.

If the physical brain is largely involved, then I’d ask “What’s stopping me from getting evaluated?” “What external help could I obtain?” “Could I get help with this and retain my own sense of dignity and privacy?” And so on.

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