It started innocently enough with a woman. Financial security was a big issue, so I took note. Then it moved on to a free copy of Transforming Debt Into Wealth
(by that guy I can never remember), then Financial Peace
. There were the first baby steps of paying off the loans as quickly as possible, stopped eating out and started tracking where the money was going. This became an evolving process, inerwoven with advice from the Dollar Stretcher, a couple blogs and this forum.
All this time I was cutting back on buying things I didn't need. That's one way to LBYM, but it's hardly as fun as finding cheaper ways to spend money on things you actually need. I've taken this final financial transformation, and I consider it a sign that I actually enjoy it as being a true LBYMer.
Gas is the most constant, in-your-face expense that's being faced, so along the lines of the hypermileing Echo thread I've been trying it with my motorcycle. From an average of about 48-50 MPG to a fairly constant 52.7 MPG and climbing by the tenths and hundredths. This is something that has made me happy to think about.
Food? The last grocery store excursion was spent trying to find items at $0.06 an ounce or cheaper. I have Jeff Yeager to thank for that one. What a catch it's gotten me! Fruits, veggies, beans and rice, milk galore. Tuna and eggs ran $0.10 an ounce and this is something I actually considered before buying.
I always considered these the background costs of getting through life. Now it's as much concern as what I want to eat, where I want to go and what I want to do. What's next? Is there a secret handshake? Annual no fees? Horror of horrors, will there be....coupons?