Sometimes surprises are great, like when you win the lottery. Speaking of which, did you know that your chances of winning the lottery are 16 million : 1? Yep, you gotta play 16 million times just to win once!

Thomas Stanley, author of The Millionaire Next Door, interviewed over 1,000 millionaires across the country and compiled their common characteristics. Wanna know a secret? He found that those millionaires who worked hard and earned it on their own, as opposed to those who simply inherited it, said they owed their good fortune not to luck, but to discipline.

Well, that may be a surprise to some of you. Sometimes surprises take the form of not-so-great. Like, take the time during the month when you receive your credit card statement in the mail. I bet you have no clue if it's going to be $3,000 or $16,000. When there is uncertainty, there is fear. Clients who come to me asking for help generally don't even open their credit card statements until at least four days after receiving them in the mail.

So, the statement just sits around, usually in a prominent place, and is a constant reminder of that uncertainty. Remember what it was like in school when you took a test and you really wanted to do well on it, and it seemed like an eternity until the teacher graded them? I was done with that when I graduated; no more uncertainty, no more fear.

Is that the way you truly wish to live? For 30 years I've used my own budgeting system, which is now patented, to keep a handle on my spending, I've never paid a dime in credit card interest and I've never had a fear of opening a bill, even the ones from my credit card. Okay, I do have a fear of opening the letter that comes from my health insurance provider announcing my premium increase for the next year. That is something I cannot control, and so it is with fear that I face it.

Isn't it time to get a handle on things you can control, such as your spending, and take the fear out of your life?

CategoriesSaving Money