Editor's note: This is a transcript of the audio file.
We all over-indulge during the holidays ... and we all try to get fit physically and financially afterwards. But, as we all know, that's easier said than done. I'm Kristin Arnold with your Bankrate.com Personal Finance Minute.
Start your year by NOT adding more debt. If you're trying to dig out of December debt regret ... put away the credit cards and turn to cash. Freeze your credit cards if you have to. If you need a visual influence to help you stay in check ... then keep a notebook or a categorized spreadsheet listing all of your expenses and estimate how much cash you need for each category.
Remember to ALWAYS pay more than the minimum on your credit card payment. The more you put towards your balances, the faster you can pay them off.
Track your progress as you go along. Each time you pay off a credit card, celebrate by doing something you like that doesn't cost much and you can't put on a credit card.
And remember to start saving for next Christmas. Estimate how much you think you'll spend, then, add 20%.
For more frugal tips, visit Bankrate.com. I'm Kristin Arnold.