If you’re in serious debt, you’ve got a bigger problem than not making enough money – a problem that more money won’t fix.

Money problems are linked to behavioral problems. We’re not talking about hitting people, or not being able to sit still in your chair, but a problem with self-control. Many of the world’s ‘wealthiest’ people end up filing for bankruptcy because they can’t satisfy their desire to spend.

The problem is not being content with what you have. On a primal level, humans collect things that they think will help with their survival. Our ancestors collected tools, weapons, and food, but today we collect things like nice clothes, technology, cars, art – you name it, humans are collecting it – but much of it is stuff we don’t need for survival.

So how can you change your behavior and solve the root of your money problems?

1.) Evaluate where your spending your money, and consider whether it’s being spent on needs or wants. You need food, but you don’t need a new 55” flatscreen Smart TV.

2.) Don’t spend more than you make. Ever.

3.) If you do get a raise, put ALL the extra income directly into savings, and continue living on what you were making before the raise. You won’t miss the extra money because you lived without it before, but in a few years you should have a nice chunk saved for a family vacation, a new home, a padded emergency fund, or simply for retirement.

4.) If you’re living beyond your means and you’re in financial trouble now, get guidance on how to get out of debt so you won’t have to penny-pinch for the rest of your life with every raise you get.