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Save aggressively

Walker says he wasn’t used to having money and so as soon as he was flush, he picked up some aggressive spending habits. If you’re dreaming of a lavish lifestyle, it’s important to know the value of saving now and putting that money to work for you.

Starting and maintaining a habit of consistent saving and wise investing will allow compound interest, dividends and capital gains to do the heavy lifting.

But to realize tomorrow’s dreams, you may have to live below your means today. Think about ways to sock away surplus funds into high-yield savings accounts, your employer’s 401(k) or other investment vehicles.

Kiss Your Credit Card Debt Goodbye

Millions of Americans are struggling to crawl out of debt in the face of record-high interest rates. A personal loan offers lower interest rates and fixed payments, making it a smart choice to consolidate high-interest credit card debt. It helps save money, simplifies payments, and accelerates debt payoff. Credible is a free online service that shows you the best lending options to pay off your credit card debt fast — and save a ton in interest.

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Learn to say no — to friends and yourself

Walker previously told CNBC he had to learn to say “no.” It’s helpful advice that’s not just for athletes or lottery winners contending with hangers-on. For the rest of us, saying “no” might mean reducing charity contributions or passing on that Friday happy hour with co-workers.

Paying yourself through a savings routine will set you up for both your long-term aspirations and the good charity works one can do with that nest egg down the line. Today’s polite “no” could mean a more valuable “yes” later.

Set a budget, and seek out guidance

It’s important to create and stick with a budget. Online tools can help, and most will start by asking you to list your income and expenses, including rent or mortgage, utilities, food, transportation and entertainment. Once you’ve accounted for money that can handle unexpected expenses, your monthly financial picture will come into focus and help set your path.

That’s where Walker’s next piece of advice comes into the picture. He suggests that anyone with disposable income should lean into the expertise of trained professionals.

If you have enough surplus funds that might be at risk without professional intervention, consider a certified financial planner who can guide you toward protecting and growing those assets through tax-advantaged investments.

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Chris Clark Freelance Contributor

Chris Clark is freelance contributor with MoneyWise, based in Kansas City, Mo. He has written for numerous publications and spent 18 years as a reporter and editor with The Associated Press.

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