Because money is so, so tight right now (for a variety of reasons, from the PA Department of Revenue to travel expenses), I have taken a few steps to save and generally manage my money better:
1. Cancel automatic transfers from my bank account to my savings account and investment plan. This is only temporary, but completely necessary right now, because it's better to pay off credit cards and loans (things that accrue interest) than to chip away at those things and let other funds simmer and earn a rate of interest that isn't even comparable to what I'm paying.
2. Since I'm in the habit of paying quite a bit more than the minimum payment on bills, I'm going to take advantage of the head start I gave myself and pay the minimums for a little while.
3. Because of my former Mary Kay business, I have two credit cards with the same company. I'm going to pay one off and only keep the one with the smaller APR. That's a no-brainer.
4. Cook! Or, um...prepare my own meals. The term "cooking" is a little ambitious for me, as I am huge fan of sandwiches, salads, and smoothies-- things that don't require a stove or oven (even of the micro variety!)... and, I guess, things that start with "S."
5. I would say cut down on shopping, but I spent a record low on "things" this month, so I'm going to congratulate myself and plan to keep up the good--frugal-- work.
6. Try to fix the aforementioned Dept. of Revenue mess. I have all of the forms necessary to file a complaint and try to make it better. Wish me luck!