Saturday, June 4, 2011
Dave Ramsey Project. Volume 3: Death Of A Couch Potato
It's been a week since we started our Total Money Makeover, and I have had several friends and readers approach me about it. Let me make one thing clear about what we are doing. We are not desperate, there is no financial crisis, the kids are fed, the bills are paid, and everything is just fine. We as a family have simply decided that we no longer want to live with debt. We are taught from day one that credit is good, debt is necessary and that's just the way it is. Like everyone else, we bought into it. We lived like everyone else. We did everything we had to do to keep up with the Joneses. Turns out the Joneses are in debt too. We're taking an alternative approach and changing our old spending habits. We have never been fiscally responsible and so now is the time, nothing more, nothing less. So don't worry about us, dear friends. Everything is going to be ok. We're living like no one else now, so that later we can live like no one else.
Three days ago, I did what I consider to be the hardest part of our Total Money Makeover. I called our cable company and told them to knock us down to just the local channels. No HBO, no CNN, no NFL Network, not even Nick At Nite (we sleep with Nick At Nite on all night.) The physical reaction my body had to this decision was real.. I thought for a moment I might vomit. I paced around the house for what seemed like forever trying to figure out why the heck I would deliberately do this to myself and my loved ones. Then I realized that the physical feeling that I had experienced was the couch potato within me dying a slow and painful death. I don't like regular network programming and local news for the most part is not news. I don't care that Jane Smith passed away in her Pacoima residence this afternoon. Surprise! Jane Smith was 108 years old. Of course she died in her Pacoima residence this afternoon.
Why get rid of cable? For a number of reasons. For one, it saves us almost $100 a month. That money for the time being is going toward building our emergency fund. We are saving up six months worth of expenses so that when a rainy day comes, and it will come, we wont have to use credit cards because we will have the cash on hand. 2. we spend a lot more time hanging out together instead of burying our brains in some worthless TV show. 3. we have Netflix($9 a month) so it's not like we're totally in the Dark Ages.
This program is not for the squeemish. I was squeemish at first. Sacrifices, and I mean big sacrifices are necessary to make it work. We have a long way to go but after a week, our world hasn't crumbled, we are on the same page, and we're excited to finally be in control of our finances. We have a plan and we're going to see it through. For years, "The Boss" has been in control of the money. She has told me what we have or what we don't have and I just went along. Now, we are in this together which is how it should have been all along. I am more involved than ever before which takes some of the burden away from her. Sorry I'm so late to the party. Thanks, Babe.