National Get Out of the Doghouse Day, July 21st is National Get Out of the Doghouse Day and while you may not be in trouble with your boyfriend or girlfriend, your checkbook may not be too happy with you.  Studies conducted by Brown University show that life choices are contagious, and that includes unhealthy financial habits.  Compiled are some tips for ending those bad habits and forming better ones to replace them so that you can get out of the financial doghouse.

Don’t be afraid to downgrade.  Most people wouldn’t even consider going to a cheaper hair salon or downgrading their cable service but when the money isn’t there you should look at your cheaper options.  Chances are you won’t even miss those weird channels that no one ever watches.  Review your services often to break free from this financially bad habit.

Shop alone.  Shopping with friends or your children almost always leads to impulse buys and purchasing items you don’t need.  Instead, carefully make your list before you hit the stores and go by yourself to ensure that you purchase only what you need and can afford.

Keep track of everything you buy for a week.  Also keep track of who you were with when you made bad financial decisions.  If you notice you buy too much fast food with one friend, or tend to go on clothing sprees with another, try suggesting a movie and dinner night in or another less expensive way to hang with your bad habit buddies.

Write down small financial goals.  Creating unreachable goals will never be beneficial for your wallet but creating tangible goals can make a huge impact on your savings.  Studies show that writing out your goals and sharing them with friends or family will increase your chances of success. Also, make sure your goals are specific. This is another way to increase your chance of success.

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