Not being able to afford something that you really want or need may be one of the worst things that can happen to a girl. Especially when it comes to that gorgeous pair of shoes, or that to-die-for handbag!  And let’s be honest, most of us have been in that situation before.

Let’s be even more honest – most of us have, from time to time reached into our purses and taken out that little piece of plastic, that seems so inconspicuous, but has the power to buy just about anything your heart desires.

Buying on credit may seem like the best thing to do at the time (because how can you let go of that 2 for 1 special at your favourite store?!), but the effects it will have on your bank balance is no joke. And the debt you’re building up definitely won’t be worth it in the end.

Here’s what to do if you feel yourself spiralling out of control:

-    Stop the habit:
The biggest problem most consumers have when it comes to overspending and debt is that they continuously perpetuate the problem by repeating this habit. It is vital to take action and stop this habit. The best way to do so is by creating a monthly budget, thus ensuring that it is known what money is being spent on.

If consumers find that they are still overspending relative to income, adjustments need to be made. This should be done by reducing the luxury items that are not absolutely necessary, such as dinners at restaurants, and excessive clothing purchases.

-    Plug the gaps:

Once a budget has been put in place and the habit of overspending has stopped, short term debt expenses, such as credit cards, overdrafts and unsecured loans, should be settled.

By simply not adding to the debt on a monthly basis, progress has already been made in reducing the debt. However, in order to put a significant dent in debt owed, consumers should look contributing additional funds to this short term debt.

-    Break the debt cycle:

In order to get financially fit and non-reliant on debt, consumers need to break the debt cycle.

Once all short term debt has been settled, including cars and other longer term instalment debts, it is import to start saving towards next purchases rather than simply replacing the old debt with new debt and a new vehicle. Consumers should rather save for an additional year or two to accumulate a big deposit or pay for the item in full.

For more tips and advice on how to control your debt visit

Have you ever been stuck in a debt spiral? Tell us about it and share your advice here.