Have you been in debt before? Are you still in debt and don’t know how to get out? You are not the only one. Many Americans are facing extremely high amounts of debt each day. It is difficult to admit that you are overspending, but that is the first step to finding a solution. Yes, it can be an overwhelming quest, but if you want to get out of debt once and for all, you have to face it head on and in a positive way. You are the one who got yourself in this situation. Therefore, you should be the one to get yourself out and you can do it. Are you on board with this? Don’t delay because this will only worsen the situation, especially if you cannot curb your spending habits and unable to take charge of your finances.
The Plan and Accountability
First you have to create a plan on how you are going to get out of debt. This will reduce any anxieties or worry that you may have. If you need help, it is best to seek the help from a professional financial advisor. You should also have someone close to you hold you accountable for your actions. Yes, there are times when you are going to get angry with this person for ‘calling you out’ about your spending habits, but you may need a hard-nosed person that doesn’t care about those feelings. You need someone who actually cares about your financial well-being.
If you are living from paycheck to paycheck, you are not in a good place financially. The same is true if you have to pay late fees on your bills every month or you constantly are notified by the bank that your checks are bouncing. If your bills come in the mail and you pretend they don’t exist and avoid opening them, you are in denial and need financial counseling. If the subsequent month’s bill comes in the mail before you can pay the last one, you are in trouble. If you don’t like balancing your checkbook because it is too overwhelming, you should take a class on financial management.
Do you know the amount of debt that you actually have? There are many individuals who don’t. Are you one of them? It is important to list all your debts and this includes student loans, credit card balances, personal loans and mortgage payment. Start by writing down the lender’s name, the loan terms, interest rate, finance fees and the amount that you owe. What is your total debt after you have completed this exercise? Look at the numbers? Do they worry you? They should if they exceed the amount that you can afford, but this is a good step in the right direction and can turn out to be a positive way for you to start taking action to reduce your debt.
The Bottom Line
So now that you are aware of how much debt you have, take small steps to reduce the debt. You can pay more on your credit card balance each month instead of the minimum required payments. It will make a huge difference with just paying even $50 extra each month. Be practical about your financial goals and ask for help if you need it. Never get discouraged. Your debt is like losing weight. It takes work, consistency and discipline. You can do it!