Standing up to your debt can be scary. We’re constantly told to stand up to our fears or to our bullies, but how do we know when it’s time to stand up to the one thing that’s keeping us from really achieving the things that we are destined to do? Most people sweep their financial problems under a rug. They think that if they don’t talk about it or don’t acknowledge it’s presence then the debt will just go away. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
Find the Courage to Admit your Financial Mistakes.
Admitting to my husband that I hadn’t been financially responsible was probably one of the hardest things I ever had to do. It’s not easy, and it’s still not easy to see the look on his face after we pay off one bill and I say “now let’s move on to the next”, but it’s made our marriage stronger.
The first step towards facing your debt is to find the courage to admit your financial mistakes. It sounds easier said than done, but trust me it’s simple. All you have to do is say to yourself and to your loved ones:
“I made a mistake with my finances, but I’m ready and I’m committed to making a change.”
Now, commit to that statement.
Create A Plan.
You don’t have to dive head first into tackling your debt, especially if this is all new to you. Instead, sit down and write out your plan. Your plan should consist of short-term, mid-term, and long-term goals. Where do you see yourself and your family in the next year? What would you like to be doing and what needs to happen with your finances in order for you to get there? By creating a plan you are putting out into the atmosphere that you are a winner and despite previous circumstances, you can and will get through this.
Get on a Budget.
Now that you’ve come clean about your finances and you’ve written out a plan, the next thing to do is to get on a budget. Before you freak out budgets aren’t bad and there are several different methods of budgeting so you’re bound to find one that suits you. Budgets help you identify areas where you’re overspending allowing you to reroute that money towards other areas.
Check out this Budgeting 101 Post that teaches you how to create a budget that will allow you to achieve your financial goals.
Remember despite the amount of debt you have you are a winner. Don’t let the final number get you down or discourage you. The only effective way to eat an elephant is to do it one bite at a time. This same practice can be applied towards paying off your debt.