published Sunday, September 25th, 2011


We all know the five-second rule, right? Drop something you're eating and pick it up within five seconds, then it's still safe to eat. Germs haven't infected it yet -- or at least that's the logic. Well, what if we use the five-second rule with our money?

  • Before you put something in your cart at the store, stop and think the following: Do I really, really need this item? Will my life change for the worse if I don't buy it? Is it at all possible that I can wait a few days or weeks to get this? How many hours did I work this week to afford it? Is it worth it? You may just find that you can indeed live without it and that maybe the object of your affection isn't worth the hours you worked to earn the cash it would take to buy it.

  • As you're writing out checks or clicking the "pay now" button on your online bill pay system, take just five seconds and think about this bill and this money. Do you think it's possible you could find a way to reduce that payment? Maybe make a few phone calls or check online at places like and see if there's any way to cut your monthly bills. Just five seconds per bill could make you more aware of what you're spending and if there's any possible way to cut that expense, even a little.

Maybe it's true that the five-second rule can work for more than just dropped goodies on the floor. Next time you're about to spend money, in any way, take just five seconds and think about your alternatives. Before you know it, you could be looking at a fat and healthy savings account.


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