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I love a good challenge, but one of the most positive ones I can think of for the sake of my wallet has to be this one I’m going to tell you about!

The day I got my first credit card was a very exciting one. I felt like such a grown up to have my name etched across this card that held access to funds I had never seen before. It was also the start of the accumulation of my debt which followed me for years to come.

It seems so harmless to just swipe a credit card and have something paid for, but as I was swiping I rarely thought about the bill that would follow me home 30 days later. I would often say to myself that I would just go home and put my money right back on my credit card after using it, but that never happened.

I quickly learned how fast those balances could add up, and how much interest would curb my cash flow when I didn’t pay those credit cards off fast enough!

Did you know that research shows that it only takes 21 days to change a habit? I’ve decided to test that theory and take part in the Interac 21 Day Credit-Free Challenge.

What do I need to do? It sounds simple, but I am not spending money that isn’t mine! I have put away my credit cards and have just been sticking to what I actually have in my bank account by using my Interac Debit card.

I have to admit, so far it feels pretty good! There was always a bit of a nagging feeling following me out of a store when I bought something with a credit card. I would brush it off with “oh, I’ll worry about it at the end of the month”, and then it would be a race to the mailbox before my husband would find my credit card bill.

Now I have nothing to hide! Well, I may need to explain all of those shopping bags in my trunk, but at least this way I can boast that those cute fall clothes are paid for in full!

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It’s all about living within your means, and staying away from credit card debt is a vital way to keep things in check. Now that I am only shopping with my Interac Debit card, I am paying close attention to my account balances, and I know when I need to say no to that second pair of riding boots that I just can’t afford this month.

Why not try the Interac 21 Day Credit-Free Challenge yourself? See what I am talking about when I say I feel better about spending what I have, and not borrowing what I don’t.

To learn more about the Interac 21 Day Credit-Free Challenge visit this http://www.21DaysCreditFree.ca to watch 21 helpful video’s that will help you succeed at the challenge, and provide you with tips and encouragement to make the challenge successful.

Disclosure: This post was part of a sponsored collaboration between Interac Association and SheKnows

Interac is a registered trade-mark of Interac Inc. Used under license.

Mandy Furnis

This is an excerpt from the article The Interac 21 Day Credit-Free Challenge which originally appeared on http://sparkleshinylove.com.