The Total Money Makeover: A Review


I’ve been just a *little* busy.

Busy as in 4 and 5 a.m. alarm calls. As in the highlight of my day is lunch. As in…you get the point.

So, in all the crazy busyness of this last week (or 2…), I have had little time to read. But, as the obsessed Book Lady, I can no more give up my books cold turkey than I could give up tea (ahhh….tea. Random tidbit of the day: I have NEVER had a cup of coffee! Gasp!). However, in my busy schedule, I have found a few minutes here and there to read a page or two. I read today’s book almost entirely while doing my daily dental routine for the past couple of weeks. I hate waste, especially wasted time, so I’ve learned quite a few ways to multitask over the years. Yeah, it’s kind of tough to rinse, brush one’s teeth, and floss while reading a book, but this is not the first time I’ve done it. And it most certainly will not be the last. (Maybe I need to change my title to the Crazy Book Lady…)

Anyway, off the ramblings. On to the book!

Society today is plastic oriented. Plastic plates. Plastic Walmart bags. Plastic money. The almighty credit card has some kind of special power that casts a spell over so many Americans. It’s the buy-this-and-buy-it-now spell. And that spells trouble.

Debt is so common in our culture. If you don’t have some kind of payment, you’re probably regarded as some kind of fanatic who thinks the next Y2K is around the corner. But, why does it have to be this way? Why do we have to spend our whole lives chained to payments on HD TVs, new cars, and student loans?

Yeah, I can’t come up with a good answer for that, either.

And neither can Dave Ramsey, the author of The Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness.

As a financial genius who has helped literally thousands of people reclaim control over their money, Ramsey steers readers down the path for financial fitness. The journey begins by realizing that one is financially fat. You may have a bulge around the credit card, some flab from those student loans that never seem to go away, and that obnoxious double chin from that brand new car you had to have.

There comes a time when one reaches the cliched point of being sick and tired of being sick and tired. That’s when it’s time to pull on your financial jogging shoes and lace up to go on a seven step journey to financial health.

In his book, Ramsey outlines a seven step plan to breaking free of debt, establishing financial security, and making your money work for you, instead of enslaving yourself to your money. Using what he calls a “Baby Steps” approach, Ramsey guides readers through the difficult task of budgeting, paying off all debt (yes, all of it), establishing an emergency fund, investing for retirement, eliminating mortgage payments, and enjoying financial freedom.

This is not your typical get-rich-quick book. Ramsey doesn’t give advice that requires a grad degree in economics to comprehend. He simply advocates old-fashioned horse sense in dealing with your finances. i.e. If you don’t got it, don’t spend it.

Of course, he also does not claim that such a path to financial fitness is easy. He clearly informs readers that the road ahead will be hard. Very hard. But with “gazelle intensity,” everyone who is willing to stick with the plan can shed that financial flab and gain stability.

Filled with anecdotes of families, couples, and individuals who have succeeded in their total money makeovers, this book will motivate you to “get sick and tired of getting sick and tired.” It is the wake-up call the majority of Americans need to get out of debt and start enjoying a life free of financial stress.


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