You know what today is? It’s the day you get OUT OF DEBT! Well OK, it’s going to take more than one day, but we’re going to get you started, with this tip we found in Woman’s Day magazine. It’s called the 10-10-80 rule. Even if you’re deeply in debt, your guiding formula should be this: give away 10%, save 10%, and live the best life you can on 80% of your income. That comes from financial advisor Mary Hunt. She says giving and saving are like magic bullets for slaying financial problems. Giving to people less fortunate builds gratitude for what you have and knowing you have money in the bank quells your fear of going broke. These two things together make you feel content enough to do whatever you have to in order to live within your means.

At first it might seem like you have to give up every optional expense – like cable, that fancy cell phone plan, or your Netflix subscription. However, if you’re serious about getting out of debt, you’ll do it. Borrow movies and books from the library, get recycled clothes from the thrift stores, and watch every drop of gas by walking whenever possible. When it comes to that 80% of your income, “spend” it on paper before you actually dish it out. Decide where every penny is going to go, starting with your rent or mortgage, followed by your home and credit card bills, and groceries. Here’s a tip: when things get especially tight, check out Angel Food Ministries .com. It’s a non-profit, non-denominational organization that provides food relief. Once a month, you can pick up boxes of fresh, high-quality groceries and meat for just $25 a box.

If you follow the 10-10-80 rule, you’ll reduce your monthly expenses, keep your bills current, become a generous giver, and more than likely you’ll still be able to treat yourself to a nice evening out about once a month. No, it doesn’t seem like much, but even though you have less - you truly will appreciate it MORE.