My parents were never the type of people to live above their means. When they first got married and needed a dining room set, they waited until they saved enough cash to buy it outright rather than charge it to a credit card—and they cherished it all the more because of that. When my brother and I were born, they worked hard to provide us with all the food, clothing, and toys we could possibly need without overdoing it. We vacationed to places like Pennsylvania and Florida rather than tropical islands or faraway countries, making priceless memories just the same.

When I graduated from college, I remembered the good financial habits my parents taught me. The biggest one was doing everything I could to keep my debt as low as possible. So rather than blow my meager paycheck from my first job on rent, I lived at home and put every cent I could toward my student loans, paying them off in only a couple of years. I used cash or my debit card when I shopped or went out with friends so I could keep track of my spending. And when I did need to charge things, I almost always paid my balance in full each month.

Naturally, things changed a bit after I got married. Cars, houses, kids, and vacations have obviously required Keith and me to give our credit cards more of a workout than we’d like at times. Sometimes we carry more of a balance than we’re comfortable with. But luckily, we have the same attitude towards debt. We work well as a team to keep it under control, while at the same time saving money for our kids’ education. And we’re committed to teaching our kids the same good financial habits that our parents taught us.

Sports-themed piggy banks
Rather than single piggy banks, our twins each have a set of four sports banks dedicated to saving, investing, donating, and spending. We are happy to teach them good financial habits early on!

Still, I know how easy it can be to suddenly find yourself in over your head with debt. And when that happens, things can seem hopeless. Luckily, there are all sorts of resources out there that can help you take back control of your finances. One of them is a debt reduction service, like Nationwide Debt Reduction Services. This type of service can help you consolidate and reduce your debt and get back on your feet financially. Just be sure to do your research and make sure the company you choose is part of the American Fair Credit Council, like Nationwide is.

Please not that I am not a financial professional—just a mom who learned good financial habits from my parents that I’m hoping to pass on to my own kids. Here’s to a healthy financial future for all of us!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Nationwide Debt Reduction Services.

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