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Resisting temptation...

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Regular Contributor

Resisting temptation...

So now that I finally have a credit card with a healthy CL again after all these years, how do I resist the temptation to use it? (I didn't want an $8K limit, I was expecting $500 or $1K.) I'm a technology enthusiast (and professional) and am naturally tempted to buy a tricked out Macintosh, or a VR headset.

 

But what I really need to be doing is saving for emergencies and retirement. How do you fiscally responsible people out there convince yourselves not to buy shiny toys with your $50K+ credit limits?

FICO8 - Jan ‘20
FICO9 - Aug 2019
Message 1 of 36
35 REPLIES 35
Super Contributor

Re: Resisting temptation...

You set a budget and stick to it. 



01/2019:
1/2020:

Hover over my cards to see my limits!
Goal cards: Cash+, Freedom.
Message 2 of 36
Regular Contributor

Re: Resisting temptation...


@Saeren wrote:

You set a budget and stick to it. 


This!

Plus if you think you can't control yourself and will be racking up debt in you credit card maybe you shouldn't have one.


Message 3 of 36
Community Leader
Super Contributor

Re: Resisting temptation...


@8bitmachinegun wrote:

So now that I finally have a credit card with a healthy CL again after all these years, how do I resist the temptation to use it? (I didn't want an $8K limit, I was expecting $500 or $1K.) I'm a technology enthusiast (and professional) and am naturally tempted to buy a tricked out Macintosh, or a VR headset.

 

But what I really need to be doing is saving for emergencies and retirement. How do you fiscally responsible people out there convince yourselves not to buy shiny toys with your $50K+ credit limits?


Years ago—and this is kind of funny because now I’m more financially responsibe than she is—a friend told me that prior to buying anything, ask yourself a question. Do you need it or do you want it?  I swear this works for me 90% of the time! And keeping and adhering to my budget completes the 360-degree circle. 

 

True story. I was in Marshall’s HomeGoods at least 1.5 hours having a good time picking out things for my home. My cart was brimming over with things: towels and bathmats, a down comfortable, a runner for the hallway, pillows for my sectional, and all kind of accessories. As I was standing in the long line, I kept looking at the things in my cart that I had so lovingly picked out and then asked myself the question. I couldn't get out of line because the space was to narrow and there were many customers behind me. So when the cashier said “next”, I walked up to her and lied. I said, “Oh Man” all exasperated. “I forgot something.”

 

I left the store without buying one thing and drove home feeling pretty proud of myself. 

 

It takes a lot of willpower, but you can do it!

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Message 4 of 36
Regular Contributor

Re: Resisting temptation...

@lupoli And that’s why I didn’t get a CC for ten years. I would’ve preferred a lower CL to reduce the possibility of getting into trouble, but that’s water under the bridge. But honestly I do think I’ve grown in the past decade, so I’m not as worried as I would’ve been 7 or 8 years ago.

I have multiple issues with budgeting. For one, I was raised to believe ‘money is the root of all evil.’ I know now it’s just a tool, but I still find managing it to be distasteful. Don’t get me wrong; I like the stuff it can buy me, but I hate dealing with money itself. Item two is my chronic disorganization (I was an ADHD child.) I’m very good about paying major bills (car, house), but little ones escape my notice all the time (water, trash, lab fees.) Finally, I hate math. I’m smart enough to do it, but I find it exceptionally tedious and boring.

In a past life, I had a sufficiently good income to expenses ratio to set everything to autopay and forget about it. I’m not quite there yet, but getting closer.

@CreditInspired That’s a good way of looking at things. But surely you allow yourself a treat every now and then. How do you know when the time is right, and how much you can spend on it?
FICO8 - Jan ‘20
FICO9 - Aug 2019
Message 5 of 36
New Contributor

Re: Resisting temptation...

I've always told myself not to spend the money if I don't have it. My cards are for rewards and building credit score.

I don't use them to buy anything I wouldn't have in the first place. If it is something I'm buying to treat myself, I will pay it down out of my bank account immediately. For instance, if it was something I didn't feel like I would have bought in the first place that cost $100, I'll stick that $100 payment on the card right after. That way, I can see the money come out of my bank and understand that I may have spent something I shouldn't have.

The one exception where I'd be willing to carry a balance are emergencies, which I've tried to define as medical, legal or job loss/eviction type stuff only. And I think those are pretty easy to recognize.
Scores: (9/1/18) EQ: 750, EX: 739, TU: 728
Message 6 of 36
Community Leader
Senior Contributor

Re: Resisting temptation...

Write this 100 times: I will not revolve a balance on my credit card.

 

Resolve to pay the statement balance by the due date. Of course, that requires a bit of discipline as you need to have the money in your payment account by the time you need to fork it over.

 

I think the way to ease into this is to treat your card like cash and pay frequently. Bring your card balances to zero once a week or so.

 

If you're going to charge a big ticket item, the cash needs to be within arm's reach, i.e. it can be added to your payment account in time to deal with the charge soon after it posts.

Message 7 of 36
Regular Contributor

Re: Resisting temptation...

The more I think about it, the best way to handle my one high CL card (well high for me) is to just get a safety deposit box and lock it away. Maybe get it out once every couple of months to generate a small balance. And it’s available in case of emergencies.

Seems to me credit cards are a rigged game, designed to trap the unwary or undisciplined. Most people can handle them, but a large portion of the population can’t, and get trapped when they overspend or use a CC in an expensive emergency. The only reason I started playing again was to get my score up so I could reach some goals (auto refi and get a nice apartment.)
FICO8 - Jan ‘20
FICO9 - Aug 2019
Message 8 of 36
New Contributor

Re: Resisting temptation...

I'm not sure what cards you have and what rewards they carry if any, but big ticket items you feel fall under the WANT catagory vs the NEED catagory, just use your card for every day stuff for a year. If by then you still want that item, use your cash back. I sincerely doubt that if you wait a year to buy something that you will have buyers remorse.

Message 9 of 36
Regular Contributor

Re: Resisting temptation...


@8bitmachinegun wrote:
@lupoli And that’s why I didn’t get a CC for ten years. I would’ve preferred a lower CL to reduce the possibility of getting into trouble, but that’s water under the bridge. But honestly I do think I’ve grown in the past decade, so I’m not as worried as I would’ve been 7 or 8 years ago.

I have multiple issues with budgeting. For one, I was raised to believe ‘money is the root of all evil.’ I know now it’s just a tool, but I still find managing it to be distasteful. Don’t get me wrong; I like the stuff it can buy me, but I hate dealing with money itself. Item two is my chronic disorganization (I was an ADHD child.) I’m very good about paying major bills (car, house), but little ones escape my notice all the time (water, trash, lab fees.) Finally, I hate math. I’m smart enough to do it, but I find it exceptionally tedious and boring.

In a past life, I had a sufficiently good income to expenses ratio to set everything to autopay and forget about it. I’m not quite there yet, but getting closer.

@CreditInspired That’s a good way of looking at things. But surely you allow yourself a treat every now and then. How do you know when the time is right, and how much you can spend on it?

Another "solution" for this issue is you calling them and requesting a lower cl that will better work for you. Smiley Wink


Message 10 of 36
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