It comes as no surprise to half of us that sticking to a budget is a Sisyphean endeavor. And now there's proof!

According to a poll by American Consumer Opinion as reported in the San Antonio Business Journal, half of the 3,136 people polled said they don't always stay within their monthly budgets.

What's more, the higher the income level, the more likely we blow the monthly stipend. Those with incomes in excess of $100,000 were the most likely to break the bank (58.9%), compared to respondents with an annual household income of $35,000 or less (43.3%).

Some of us are in no place to lecture, so here we present some tried-and-true tactics for pointing your financial wagon to the high road:

  • See what a difference it can make to reduce your spending. We've got a host of other budgeting calculators that will spew out the glories of sticking to a budget in irrefutable black-and-white dollar figures.

  • Have an emergency stash at the ready to cover those inevitable budget busters. Here's a 60-Second Guide to establishing some short-term savings.

  • If you've got debt, get hands-on help paying it off with our free (!) Get Out of Debt guide.

  • Read this brief post from a budgeting convert, Storytelr1, who shares his secret to living within his means. And then join the host of Fools on the Living Below Your Means discussion board for some of the best advice around.

  • And finally, we've got a plan: Devote just 15 minutes a day for the next five days to Certify Your Finances so that they pass muster.