Just a few years ago, Shannelle says she was living the life many people dream about. She was making a six-figure salary, wearing designer clothes and dining out four nights a week. Then, in 2006, she watched one of Oprah's Debt Diet shows.
"Before I saw the Debt Diet show, I was focused on just consuming and not really knowing what I was consuming," she says. "I had the hottest, the latest, the cutest, the best. I lived in 675 square feet, and I couldn't understand where my money was going."
Shannelle made the decision to cut back and live on less. "I don't think I had any idea before how wasteful I was," she says. "A lot of things I thought I needed, I didn't anymore. ... Now, more closet space represents the uncluttering of my life."
Instead of going to the beauty salon once a week, Shanelle now goes once every eight weeks and does her own hair at home. She's also cut her grocery bill down to $30 a week. "I want to make sure that I only use what I need, not what's available to me," she says. "Life is not about spending. It's about living."