Spending reflects your values
Growing up, Greutman’s mother would announce “mental health days” when her daughters could skip school and head to the mall. Later, Greutman shopped to cope with the stresses of being a stay-at-home mom and having a husband who worked 12-hour days. Halfhearted attempts to budget always failed.
“A part of me didn’t want to change the way I was spending money, because I liked all the stuff,” said Greutman, 35, of Oswego, N.Y.
She told her husband Mark about their debt, and they worked together and paid off the bills in two years. They sold their house and moved into a townhome, freeing up $1,200 a month. Every month, they subjected their spending to a filter: Did it align with their values of family, faith and financial freedom?
“I valued all of those things, but yet if you looked at my checking account statement, it would look like I valued clothes and food and extracurricular activities,” said Greutman, who wrote about her experiences in a new book titled “The Recovering Spender: How to Live a Happy, Fulfilled, Debt-Free Life.”