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I think the biggest single habit that will get you to FI is investing money each month. One has to get into the habit of writing those checks every month year in and year out.

The distinction for me is that I'm always looking for the best place for my money. Where can I get the best return blending risk and reward. There are few totally safe investments. Even T bills have a teensy bit of risk. But credit card interest is 100% safe and returning whatever your rate is, guaranteed. This isn't semantic. You are borrowing money at ridiculous interest rates when you use your credit card and don't pay off the balance. I can't think of a better place for your money than paying that off.

It will also help to establish that habit of writing those monthly checks. You're sending it to Visa instead of E-Trade but its doing the same thing for you. Once you've paid off the cards, begin paying them off in full each month and send the remainder of that same monthly alotment to your discout broker or mutual fund company. Same budgeted amount just going to a different place. That's the habit and that will get you to FI.

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