Learning to control credit use is not easy, but self discipline is the key. A general guide suggested by financial counselors is that your annual installment debt (excluding mortgage) should be no more than 20% of your take-home pay. Use credit as a convenience but not for impulse buying of things you cannot afford. Avoid using your credit card for cash advances except in an emergency, because you will pay interest from the date you received the cash advance and there is usually an extra cash advance fee. Pay the balance in full each month when possible, limit the number of cards you use, and keep expenses to a minimum.
When your income in not sufficient to pay all your bills, consider using a credit counselor to help you develop a workable plan to pay your bills, control spending and avoid bankruptcy
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