Here’s the math that makes me want to kneel

Let’s have that rounded up. The golf clubs, the wedding ring, the ATVs (eventually) paid, the student loan (finally) paid, the down payments on both vehicles and the house down payment add up to approximately $114,000. But $600,000 was made by us. Where did we spend $486,000 in Waldo’s world? It’s sure it didn’t end up in a 401(k) as heck.

Sure, for six months or so (we ended up selling it we had car and ATV payments all over and a house payment (we ended up selling it), but there’s really no excuse for that much ridiculous spending. I get completely disgusted with myself when I look at these numbers and feel utterly ashamed of wasting the best years of my life without having a well-thought-out written plan for our money.

Do you think that I told you all this so that you might think that I’m a fool for squandering a lot of money?

Yup, surely I was. I’m okay with you thinking that I’m a fool, but only if you can learn from my mistakes and prevent you and your family from doing so. If after reading our story you end up making the same mistakes as we did, then that makes you a bigger fool than us. So laugh it up, but learn from it, please.

I can hear it now I’m not that stupid. I’m not going to make the same mistakes you all made.” If you don’t have a plan, you will. And without you even realizing it it’ll happen, just like it did to us.

And what am I meant to do to stop all of your mistakes?

I’m going to make a little unpaid endorsement here because before you get a big pay rise, I truly believe you need a strategy. Before we started trucking, if I had this details, I have no doubt we’d be well on our way to becoming millionaires. Seriously, I had the math done. How much I love my calculator, you know. You will still benefit from the following data, even if you chose to stay away from trucking.

If you haven’t heard of a man named Dave Ramsey before, I advise you to try him out before you risk, like we did, much of your life’s earnings. Dave is the radio host of The Dave Ramsey Show and the best-selling author of The Complete Wealth Makeover for The New York Times.

By budgeting and surviving on less money than you make, his philosophy is more about being debt-free. This is really common sense material here that has been overlooked by most Americans, including me. Corny sound? And don’t laugh yet.

I heard it on XM radio for the first time and what he was teaching really made a lot of sense to me. Because of this, we found that we had designed a house that was way more pricey than we could afford and that we had too much auto debt to be financially successful. To make it worse, we took a 50 percent pay cut as The Wicked Overlord came out of the bus.

But we sold the house and my precious pickup truck (you know, the wife always picks up a nice car). We’re having a grip on our finances now and we’re surely, hopefully making some gains, still with half our initial profits. Check out Dave’s page for more information about Dave Ramsey.

The message here is that if you’re going to make the compromise of being away from home, don’t wash it down the toilet to improve your financial condition.

So have a plan before you start and stick to it for Pete’s sake. Like we have done, don’t waste eight years of your life. Instead of a stretch of time that you wish you could get back or at least forgive, make those eight years a positive experience. Neither is practicable.

You also found a bit of a change of attitude there. For good cause, I got serious. You need to be serious when it comes to that much cash. If you’re not serious about your money and have a strategy to keep it after marriage, it can disappear faster than sex. See it? I have recovered. Now it is out of my system.

You might be even more interested in discovering whether trucking is right for you with all this talk about money. Are you looking at that part? Will you have to?

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