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In Getting a Grip on Your Money, I point out the importance of spending less than you make and simplifying your life. But how can you actually do it? From time to time on this site, I'll be posting proven ways to save money while simplifying life at the same time. This is not a comprehensive list, just some painless things about which I (or people close to me) have direct knowledge.

The first few suggestions I have all concern items that are fixed costs and that relate to information. Did you know that some families spend more on "information," broadly defined, than food? That's fine if they think they're getting their money's worth, but maybe they're not. Think about your own budget: How much do you spend each month on local phone, long distance phone, wireless phone, TV cable and Internet? Too much? Then check out the suggestions below:

>Spend less on wireless phone service

>Spend less for long distance; just try this little experiment

>Get good TV signals without paying for cable

Important point: I do not get paid anything for endorsing wireless phone service, long distance service, or alternatives to cable TV.