Is It Even Possible To Live Below Your Means?

Because one of our main services at is to help people fix credit mistakes and problems, we spend a lot of time on our blog talking about things you can do to fix the problems that are on your credit report already. But looking at your credit and financial history is only one part of the solution.

To truly make a difference and put yourself on the path to a brighter financial future, you need to be looking at the things that you do today and going forward with your finances and how you spend money. One of the most common pitfalls that we see many fall into is spending too much, regardless of how much they make.

In a recent post on, Trent discusses his very own story of how he recognized this problem and what he has done to overcome it.

The amount of income I earned had very little connection with how much of my income I was spending or saving. Earning more money didn’t somehow magically mean that I was now saving more money. It usually meant that I was spending more money.

It’s easy to say, “Well, that’s because you made bad choices,” and that may be so. The thing is, I made essentially the same set of bad choices whether I was making $8,000 a year or $60,000 a year.

No matter what my income was, my spending would match or slightly exceed it.

This is a problem that a vast number of Americans face all the time. No matter what they earn, there’s always a channel to spend it. There’s always something else to long for and to acquire.

Read the Trent’s full story here.

Trent’s is a moving tale that is shared by many, and his finally coming to grips with the answer of only spending according to your “real” needs is an important lesson. As with any financial journey, one of the most important first steps is that of self-discovery. Understand what it takes to truly make you happy versus what the media and society is influencing you instead.

The old adage about “keeping up with the Jones'” has never been more true, and the pitfalls have never been more treacherous than in today’s economy, where your salary is more fluid than ever before. Learning to live below your means is possible, and to be truly financially independent, is necessary. Your only goal now is to look at that face in the mirror and determine what is most important to you.

Have you learned to live below your means, and only spend on what is necessary, or are you still suffering from shiny thing syndrome? Tell us your story in the comments below.

Image By: Axion23

About Anthony Candella

Anthony is the founder and Directing Attorney of and has been helping consumers just like you understand and improve your credit and financial situation since 2003.

  • spanky

    Wha’cha willing to wipe ya behind wit, how many days can ya go hungry, what’cha willing to live with less of or without. how many days can ya stay home and don’t go out. can ya live on little or no money. can ya live just barely existing, can ya buy clothes only if ya need them, not impress’n. do ya mind look’n like a bumb sometimes. do ya mind walk’n where ya got to go even if it’s long distance. can ya wash ya clothes out by hand if ya had ta. can ya give up all things that’s enjoyable, that makes life worthwhile living. here you go you can live below the poverty level, your means.