I recently found the Simple Dollar website through the author's article on the 30 best freeware, which was rather widely featured on several sites. So now I'm reading its RSS feed and finding many rather interesting articles.
This particular series, "The Road to Financial Armageddon", is particularly good - do read it! I've linked to #8 in the series of 10 articles.
I experienced a similar (but smaller scale) problem with credit card debt when I was in the UK - ran myself into a credit card hole and spent three months digging myself out. I can tell you, the feeling of being in debt is entirely awful and till today, it makes me very careful about my credit card spending.
Of course, I'm still a rather profligate spender - Nekki says that I "spend money like water". And it's true - I don't have the discipline to put money away at a serious rate. But I keep reminding myself, I gotta save, invest, plan for the future. If you already have a plan for the future, good for you. If not - whether you're young or old, it's never too early to start practicing some financial discipline.