With little extra effort, you can really save at the grocery store! It is also a good idea to only use credit card for emergencies (unexpected car or home repairs). Always have hospitals bill you if you don't have the money in checking or savings to pay it outright - hospital bills don't count negatively toward your credit score. Cancel what you don't need (Internet, cable, home phone) and start living within your means - you'd be surprised how available those things are now. Going without isn't a big deal especially since you come by lots of stuff for free in public places...
Check the ads
Did you know that Wal-Mart will price match other stores' shopping ads? Now, I know for some the idea of going to Wal-Mart is worth not saving a couple of bucks but if something you would normally buy is on sale at Tom Thumb and it is cheaper than the price at Wal-Mart - you can get it for the Tom Thumb price. This is great for not having to go to 5 different stores to get the best deals!
If the idea of clipping coupons embarrasses you - you aren't alone. BUT if you are anything like me, you need EVERY PENNY! Clipping coupons on stuff that you are planning on buying anyway combined with the price match ads at Wal-Mart above can add up to BIG SAVINGS!
Probably the most important tip is to budget your money and STICK to it! I'm a fabulous budget-er but when it comes to sticking to the amount I've allotted for each category I can sometimes get into trouble. First and foremost - pay yourself first! Put $ in your savings account and TRY NOT to touch it. Then prioritize - you need a roof over your head, groceries, electricity, water, gas, car payment, fuel and insurance. You CAN get buy without cable, Internet, phone, and the other "luxuries" that we now view as necessities.