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It’s a fresh new start people, and get out of debt is on the top of that list! I love this time of year. Everyone is evaluating and making goals for everything! The eternal optimist in me just flourishes at this time of year. Want to lose those annoying 5 pounds? Make a plan! Want to find the person you are destined to be with? Make a plan and go for it! Want to get rid of that crippling debt? Well, this one is no different. Make a plan! The only problem with that is those plans turn to dust within a couple of months. How can you not be one of those people?
In my own personal financial situation, I have struggled with this for years! It wasn’t until I turned 30 (Yikes! I’m old, lol.) this past year that I finally woke up and decided to start taking action (better late than never right?). Below, are 4 things that I have learned from people that have successfully managed to either get out of or never got into the debt train. Let’s take a look at what they did, shall we?
1 ) Don’t Ignore Your Debt
I can’t tell you how many people I’ve seen (me included) that just grimace at the snowballing debt and just close our eyes to it. The minute you start doing that is the exact same time that debt has defeated you! The first step, let’s open our eyes!
The best thing that you can do is think small. Take one step at a time. You might be thinking, “Catherine, you don’t understand. I’ve got a lot of debt. It’s just too much to handle.” Yes, I completely understand and have had that exact situation myself. So, I completely get it and you are SO not alone. Take a look at this post I created about small yet actionable things to do in order to stop procrastinating your finances.
2 ) Stop Saying You’ll Never Get Out of This
With that kind of attitude, you are completely right! The mind is a powerful thing. I can’t help but think of this one particular verse
“For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he” – Proverbs 23:7
What a simple yet powerful statement? If you think you can or can’t accomplish something, your actions are going to follow you think is going to happen. Up until this past year, I have thought to myself, “you’ll never get out of debt. It’s simply too much to deal with.” You know what? My actions have completely followed my thought process until this past year.
3 ) Start Hanging Around Like Minded People
Last New Years Eve, I was having dinner with some friends. One of my friends that were sitting directly across from me, I admired him so much. Not from romantic standpoint but from a pure financial respect standpoint. The backstory about him, he has an amazing 6 figure per year job, fun/quirky personality, great down payment on his first house and the list goes on! The waiter was getting ready to order and I was so excited!! I was going to order a big steak (of course, why not? It’s the New Year’s. Why not get the most expensive thing on the menu?Me=Big Time Weenie, lol.). So, the waiter finally comes around to him and I thought for sure he was going to show out and order the most expensive thing on the menu!
Guess what!?! He ordered a chicken with a side salad. With his salary, he could have afforded the entire menu without any anxiety. However, he did not. He lives well below his means and lives a significantly less stressful life!
4 ) Get Constant Encouragement
I love looking at success stories (again, me=eternal optimist)!! Whenever I start feeling down about either my personal financial situation I just look at people who were in similar situations as me and not only have turned it around but put down actionable steps to help me turn my own situation around. This morning, I really needed some inspiration, so I looked at Pinterest and I saw this one couple that got out of $120,000 of debt!!!! How amazing! Or this one lady that got out of grad school with $40k in school debt and not only has she crushed her debt but now she makes over $100k a month!!!! Yes, you read it right, not $100k a year but A MONTH!!!
All of these are small yet actionable things you can do. Once you have done one, have a mini party. Celebrate the small successes! It will build your confidence to continue on to make that one bigger step! I hope this has been encouraging as it as been for me. Let me know what small financial step that you have taken, in the comments below! I so want to hear them, you never know they may help someone else out!
You Are Not Your Previous Mistakes,