Thursday, September 16, 2010

Freedom from debt!



Debt…. Such an ugly word!

There was some talk about this on Twitter this morning, which gave me inspiration for this blog post. According to creditcards.com, 29% of Americans don’t use credit cards. Are you one of them?

I am trying hard to focus on getting rid of my debt.

I have stopped using both my credit cards. One I have cut up and one I have just for emergencies.

I took a Dave Ramsey Financial Peace class and it is so true when he says the borrower is slave to the lender.

That is exactly how I feel.

I'll be honest, I still found myself using the credit card after I took his class. You can sit in the class and hear all the right things to do, but you have to want to get out of your situation bad enough in order to make a change and I am finally at that place.

My ultimate goal would be to be free of credit card debit before I get out of school. Because when I get out of school I will be hit with student loan payments and I would just love to be free and clear of credit card payments.

The thought of student loans makes me cringe, but unfortunately it's what I had to do.

And then I have my car. Oh, how I dream of the day with no car payment!

I’ve FINALLY realized I have been living way outside my means. It’s a mess I’ve gotten myself into, but I can get out of it with a lot of hard work.

It takes you awhile to get into a debt mess (or in some cases not very long) and it will take awhile to get out of it, not going to happen over night.

I’m blessed with a job as a receptionist, but let’s face it, it pays the bills but it’s surely not the big bucks! But I'm in school trying to obtain a career which will give me better financial stability for my future.

I've also learned of the importance of knowing where all your money is going.

This might seem so minuet, but I have a prime example to share with you from just this week. I was driving home from school this week and my car wanted to make a direct right into the McDonald's parking lot because I had a craving for a McFlurry and fries. Y'all don't know how badly I wanted it. But I'm proud to say I conquered and just drove right on by. I know it was money I didn't need to spend, and about $5 more dollars I had in my pocket.

So small, but yet a big lesson. And if we can learn the lessons in the small things, think of the bigger things God will entrust to us. Just one of many examples I could give you.

Have you found yourself debt free? Are you currently in the process of trying to become debt free? Any advice? Anything that you can share that has helped you? I would greatly appreciate it.

I know if I can get a handle on this at a young age, it will so benefit me in the future.

15 comments:

Kaysie said...

Oh I'm right there with you, girl! I've been out of school for a few years now, but this year I'm working really hard on getting my cc debt down too. What I'm doing is starting with my lowest cc payment (let's say it's $20/mo) and paying double the min payment ($40/mo). Then I'm making min payments on all my other cc's. After I pay my first cc off I'm going to put that $40 towards my next cc (lets say has a min payment of $40/mo) I have to pay off. So the second cc would be getting an $80 payment each month. Once the second cc is paid off, then my third cc would get that $80 payment on top of the min payment, and so on until I get them all paid off. I actually got this idea from Kelly Stamps' blog a long time ago and for me it's been working pretty well. Best of luck to you!

Karah said...

Ugh gotta love debt! I am working on getting my debt paid off too. My car will be paid off in 4 months and then I plan to use that money to get my credit card paid off. I am also shamefu to say that I live outside my means too.

Kristen @ ladybug-blessings.com said...

Ah I'm right here with you too! I read his book this summer and am working on it. Doing the paying off the lowest amount (for me a root canal!) and minimum payments on the others and then moving to the next one etc. :) Since I went to Australia I gained some debt but I need to pay it off! Sadly, it just seems like things keep getting thrown my way!

Bobbi Johnson said...

My husband and I are so fortunate to say we got rid of our CC debt. It's the best feeling in the world!!! Cutting back on extra expenses is hard, though, but once all your debt is gone, you can learn to splurge in moderation so as to be able to pay off your credit card monthly (at least that is what we do). BUT...we both have student loans...totally about $500/month. YIKES!!! So, you're definitely on the right track to want to get rid of your CC debt before getting hit with the student loan payments. Good luck! You're moving in the RIGHT direction! :)

Todd and Courtney said...

You can do it! Todd and I have always been very cautious with spending and charge everything to our American Express but pay it in full every month. It's easy to rack up the bill though. Ours always seems so darn high!

Jordan said...

Great post and good luck getting out of CC debt! You can do it! I recently got an Old Navy CC but have only used it once. I figure that will help build credit and I wont use it all of the time like I would a regular CC! :-)

Tatiana said...

You're so right about debt being such an ugly word. I feel like we're mostly out of it (except school) and they are about to pile up again since we're expecting our first baby... sigh... I often wonder if it is realistically possible to be completely debt free...

Jacquie said...

Good for you, Lauren, and I love your honesty. In our early years of marriage, David and I racked up some debt and I always felt SO burdened by it. I finally got serious (pre-Dave Ramsey) and made myself a budget (Excel spreadsheet) and decided where to cut back and what to do to pay off my debt. It took us less than a year. We still use credit cards, but we pay them in full every month, and I use the envelope system (electronically, with Quicken) and have a saving plan. I also get really good rebates on the two credit cards that I use...so the CC companies PAY ME for using the cards.

Good luck to you. You can do this! And you will feel so free when you do!!

Jen said...

Stumbled across your blog from Kellyscorner blog. My husband adn I are taking FPU right now. We've estimated that by this time next year we can get rid of all our debt (except mortgage). I have some friends that were able to get rid of around $70,000 in debt in 2 years (they were in their early 20's)!! they did FPU and made it work, they took extra jobs and didnt go out to eat.
As Dave says the normal American has debt, and I don't want to be normal!!
Good Luck with it!

The Rohman Family said...

Just wanted to encourage you! I am now where you will be shortly. I am paying off school loans. What a drag! But I did clear myself of all credit card debt before starting to pay off school loans. That is such a great goal!

Staci said...

Once again, another post that I could've written myself! I'm right there with you in terms of credit card debt. My pastor and his wife did a financial class several months ago and one of the best things I've started doing is saving for christmas.

Every month i set aside a little bit of money so that when christmas comes around I pay all cash for it! Christmas doesn't put me in debt!!

a boy a girl and a pug said...

good for you. i only use a credit card for my business otherwise just cash and debit. hubs and i are saving to pay cash for our next car. the Lord has been good to allow us to keep on it and achieve this goal hopefully by the first of next year.

Kendra said...

Good for you getting control of debt and spending while you are young. People throw away so much money on interest alone! We only have debt on our house. We pay outright for stuff and we pay our CC off each month (we put all our bills and spending on it to keep track and to earn flier miles!) You are a smart girl to get rid of those evil credit cards! Unless you pay they off they are of the devil!

Jessica @ Acting Adult said...

Good for you! I'm glad that you're taking control of your situation. :) You'll get there!

Simply Bonkers! said...

I follow Dave as well! I know exactly how you feel! I decided to put a debt ticker on my blog. It is not the total debt, but the debt I'm trying to pay off right now (hubby's vehicle.) It is a bit embarassing to show how much we owe on a blog, but it keeps me accountable!

I am currently listening to: Your Money or Your Life on my drive to work. It is very humbling. I think it goes along well with Dave Ramsey's teachings.

I look forward to watching your progress. And know that if you ever need someone to keep you accountable, I'm here for ya!