Have you been trying to pay off your debts lately? How has it been going? For some, paying off debts can be incredibly difficult. For others, they seem to make tremendous headway just weeks after they start tackling their debts. So what’s the real difference between these two people? Why is it that debt reduction is easy for some, but not for others? Before we dive into that question, let’s see if you’re really serious about paying off your debts. Take this simple survey, and then let’s analyze what you’d be willing to do and what you’re not willing to do to pay off your debts.
Are You Serious About Paying Off Your Debts?
(For those of you that are using an incompatible OS for the survey, the questions are, would you be willing to: 1) Cut your cable? 2) Switch to a cheaper phone service provider? 3) Turn the thermostat colder in the winter and hotter in the summer? 4) Mow lawns for $15 for friends and neighbors? 5) Move to a smaller, lower rent property? 6) Downgrade your car? 7) Cut your out-to-eat spending to almost nothing? 8) Make gifts instead of buy them? 9) Ride your bike instead of drive? 10) Stop buying new clothes?)
So how do you rank? How many things were you willing to do to get out of debt?
9-10 Things Out of 10
You are hands down going to win financially. You’re hardcore and willing to do almost anything to kick your debt! Stay consistent with your intensity and you’ll likely be completely out of debt in less than two years. Just think about the pile of money you’ll soon have after that! Saving will be so easy you won’t even have to think about it.
If you downgraded your car or started riding your bike to work, then what would your co-workers and friends think of you? By scoring between a 5 and 8, you’re clearly willing to do quite a bit here and there, but your pride is still important to you. Your lukewarm devotion to the payoff will extend the time-frame from two years to four or five years.
1-4 Things Out of 10
Are you serious about paying off your debts? Absolutely not. Sure, you reduced your insurance by a few bucks and cut back on out-to-eat dining from 3 times a week to 2 times a week. You are able to save a little bit of money to put toward your debt, but the question is, “Will you?” I have seen many people in this category. They say they want to get out of debt, they take action once in a while to earn some money, but they always fail to see the big picture (ie. they never set up an emergency fund) and find themselves deeper and deeper in debt. Some might get out in 10-15 years, but most will never see the light and will be in debt for the rest of their lives.
Zero Things Out of 10
If you’re willing to do none of the 10 things mentioned in the survey, then it’s pretty clear – you’re NEVER getting out of debt. You might tell your friends that you’re working to be better financially, but nothing ever changes. You’re not fooling anyone. Unless something dramatic happens in your life, I expect that you’ll not only be in debt forever, but you’re much more likely to go bankrupt and ruin yourself financially. I urge you not to stay in this category – nothing good ever happens to those that stay here.
When I was in debt, there was an urgency inside of me to get out and get out now. I cut my cable, I sold my Nissan Altima and bought a Honda Civic, I rode my bike everywhere, I cut my nephew’s lawn, and I made a budget and reduced every single bill that I had. I was , which is the main reason why I was able to pay my house off in less than a year.
If you have this burning sensation inside of you that’s screaming, “I WANT OUT! GET ME OUT OF DEBT!”, then you’ll likely have no trouble. But, if you say to yourself, “Yeah, we should probably get out of debt,” then stop kidding yourself. You’re going to be in debt forever.
Are you serious about paying off your debts? What have you done so far to pay down your debt?
My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.