Are You Beating Up On Yourself About Debt?
When you hear the word "debt", whats the first thought or feeling that comes to you? For most people debt is "bad" or it becomes the "enemy" and is something that should be avoided like the plague.
Having debt does not make you a bad person. The more a situation is judged as being bad, the worse it gets. It's the judgement that you have around debt, that will keep you feeling "stuck". It's the judgement that brings out the anxiety, the fear, the stress, the knot in the stomach.
It's the old success principle: what you focus on expands. So what are you focusing on? Getting out of debt is an inside job first! What that means is taking 100% responsibility for your debts and admitting to yourself that you have an obligation, and knowing and believing that you will fulfill that obligation, by paying your creditors as quickly as possible.
No one wants to be stressed, or worry about living beyond their means. Most people are very uncomfortable talking about the subject of money and debt. And since the subject of money management is NOT normally taught in schools, where do we learn about it?
From our families, friends, co-workers etc, tv shows. These are people who mean well, and it's been my experience that they are usually passing along information that may be outdated, and no longer relevant for the times that we currently live in and may or may not apply to you and your life. It is THEIR opinions and beliefs.
Once again it doesn't make it a "good" or "bad" thing. The answer is to find a solution that "works" for you and your particular situation. Keep in mind, that once you decide to become debt free, it will become crystal clear that not everyone thinks that becoming debt free is a good idea.
Everyone from your local bank to your grocery store, want you to buy on credit. Realize that "credit" is a tool that can serve you, or NOT serve you. Here are some tips for becoming debt free.
1) Admit that you have debt, and are willing to become debt free. This is the most important step and is part of being 100% responsible, and being open to finding a solution. Without knowing where you are now, you are probably not going to be able to plot out a plan or map to where you want to go.
2) Don't add any more debt. This is all about changing habits, beliefs, and attitudes about buying on credit. Your attitudes about money/credit may have served you up to this point, and the good news is that you can now make new choices that support you. Remember "life" happens and there may be times when you may have to use credit. If this should happen DON'T beat yourself up. Just continue down your path of debt reduction and the ultimate goal of financial freedom.
3) Start to pay off the debt NOW. This seems like an obvious and simple step, and it's simple to do and also simple NOT to do. Afterall we are human beings, and change is not something that we are very comfortable with. Put all your debts on paper, so that you are clear about what you owe. One of the best strategies to debt reduction is the "something-something" principle. Focus on paying (1) creditor off at a time. This will keep your energy concentrated, and your debt reduction efforts will be more effective, than trying to pay off everyone at one time.
4) Take "extra" money and apply it toward your debt. Where can you get the "extra" money? Start to watch where you spend your money. For example: using coupons, or shopping at a warehouse club, can save you thousands of dollars over the course of a year. These savings can be used to pay down your debt quickly and effortlessly.
Keep in mind that your past doesn't equal your future. Look at your current financial situation as a "learning" experience, and an area that you are able to improve on....versus a place that you are judging yourself for a mistake. Many people just like you have been able to eliminate their debt. The good news is....so can you!!!!
©2004 All Rights Reserved
Author Info Box:
The author, Mario Castagno is the webmaster of
a resource for debt reduction programs.
Reducing Debt Before Its Too Late - How To Avoid The Pitfalls Of Creeping Debt
Reducing debt usually isn't a high priority for people until they have already gotten into trouble with overspending. Using a few basic guidelines, and debt calculations, can help you see when your debt load is getting into the danger zone.Budgeting GuidelinesCreditors use budgeting guidelines when reviewing and approving credit. If your debt exceeds the financial communities recommended guidelines, then you have a higher risk of credit applications being denied.Getting, and keeping, your debt in line with recommended budgeting guidelines, is an important step in debt reduction.Use the following ...(related: Debt Relief)
The Effects Of Consumer Debt
Consumer BorrowingConsumer borrowing in the UK has now crashed through the £1 trillion barrier. 80% of this is due to credit card borrowing, loans and mortgages. How are people managing to handle their debt and what effect is debt having on families today?The National Consumer Council reports that 6 million families in th...(related: Debt Relief)
Bankruptcy: What You Need To Know
Personal bankruptcy is a legal way to give people with overwhelming debt a fresh financial start. Many people do not realize that there are five types of bankruptcy options available under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code; however, for most consumers there are really only two viable options; Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy.Chapter 7, bankruptcy is entitled Liquidation: In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, a court-supervised proc...(related: Debt Relief)
Home Equity ? Foreclosure Often Not Necessary In Current Market
While driving around your community, you may have seen signs posted on telephone poles that offer "foreclosure help." These seemingly generous offers to help financially troubled homeowners who are in danger of losing their homes to foreclosure are actually scams. Typically, the "help" comes in the form of an offer to buy the home for a reduced price from the homeowner. The scammer offers to pay off th...(related: Debt Relief)
What Are The Benefits And Consequences Of Getting Rid Of Debt The Easy Way
We have all experienced getting so far in debt we don't know how we're going to get out. There are many different options that you have for quick relief with benefits and consequences. You can look at the overview and see which option is the best option for you.Consolidation1. Benefits
- Lower monthly payments
- No worry of paying multiple debt collectors every month, pay only one agency
- Percentage of debt charged by consolidation company
- Costs for Loan
- Cost for counseling or negotiation...(related: Debt Relief)
Debt Management - Is It The Right Choice For You?
Debt Management plans offer credit counseling clients a different and new approach to tackle their finances. Finding out if a debt management plan is right for you can take some time. However looking into the pros and cons now will help you know if entering into a debt management plan is right for you.ProsConsolidated Monthly Payment ? Debt Management Plans consist of one monthly payment of an individual's credit card debt and other unsecured debt. Instead of several payments that are sent out monthly the credit counseling agency will receiv...(related: Debt Relief)
Personal Debt Reduction Practices
Personal debt reduction practices, the steps people take to relieve the debt in their lives and to become more financially free, are a hot topic among financial circles. American spending habits are producing more people who are deeper in debt rather than people trying to achieve financial freedom.The amount of debt Americans go into each year is mounting as most people strive to keep up with the Jones' rather than to live within their means. The phrase "living beyond your means...(related: Debt Relief)
Deal With All Your Debts With Care!
Lots of people take a large ammount of loans and suddenly they discovered that they're in debt and life seems pretty gloomy for them, in this situation please don't despair. Most people have b...(related: Debt Relief)
Debt Collectors: Men Or Mice?
Who are these people anyway? They viciously harass you and call you bad names. They embarrass you beyond belief by leaving detailed messages with your ne...(related: Debt Relief)
The Road To Debt Relief
Living with debt is not something someone hopes for, but it happens and it usually becomes far more severe than it should before something is done to eliminate it. Once many individuals realize they have a problem with debt, they are too embarrassed to ask for help so they let themselves dive further into debt. Being embarrassment and ashamed are regular emotions many encounter when they realize they are in debt however you are not alone so you shouldn't feel embarrassed.Everyday people get into debt, but everyday people are looking for ways to debt relief, whether it is through self-help, credit counseling, dept management programs, or...(related: Debt Relief)