The Story of How I Tried to Budget on My Own, then Tried to Quit Kelsa, then Realized I was Succeeding in the Process.

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$29.87 and $46.89. These numerical values have much more meaning than just being “dollars” to me. $29.87 was the amount of money that we had in our bank account the day my wife and I met with Kelsa from Fiscal Fitness Phoenix, and $46.89 was the amount of money that was “out” for payments to bills or other expenses that we had no clue about. Don’t worry, I calculated it for you

…that’s NEGATIVE $17.02!

So these values, $29.87 and $46.89 represent something much bigger than money; it was a representation of our life at the time. Let me just explain,

I was working 60+ hours a week and my wife was working 40+ hours a week yet we were the poorest we had ever been.

I first heard of Kelsa through a friend I worked with and honestly thought she was kind of crazy. She recommended that I meet with her and of course, I had no time, I worked too much…I literally searched for excuses for about a month. Then I saw my friend become terrified with the amount of money she was spending. Of course, this is after she met with Kelsa and she was forced to actually look at her expenses. Like most of us that see Kelsa, we were all what I call, “side-swiped” with the actual amount of our expenses when we first learned of them. My friend convinced me to look at how much I was spending so I surrendered. I spent 5 hours on a Friday night searching through the last 3 months of our checking accounts and sorting and calculating and chocking and having heart palpitations. I raised my flag after those 5 agonizing hours. I emailed Kelsa the next day and scheduled an appointment for the soonest I could get in. I was ready to take this battle on, or so I thought. I was apprehensive to say the least, and I was determined to not change my lifestyle. After all,

“I don’t even know her and I can tell you right now she isn’t going to tell me what to do with my money.”

That attitude didn’t last long. It was soon after that that I realized a few things. First, Kelsa is right almost ALL the time. I gave up on trying to prove her wrong about 3 months into it. Second, I was good at working and making money and I was horrible at spending wisely and I didn’t even know how to start saving money. And lastly, I was warned that it was going to be hard at some point and let me tell you that “hard” is not the word. Kelsa and I had words a few times and I wanted to spend every cent we saved to “fire” her. But at that point, I had already committed to changing the ways I spent money and I couldn’t even think about having no money in our savings account just to satisfy my ego.

Fast forward 5 months…

We no longer have credit card debt, we have a substantial savings account, we are planning for emergencies (instead of dealing with them in a panic), and our relationship is much stronger because our finances are no longer a hindrance to our personal life. Learning the skills to manage and budget our money have been priceless to us. We cannot thank Kelsa enough.