Whenever I share my story, I am most often asked,
“How did you become debt free?”
I have to be honest, it was a process and I learned a lot along the way. In fact, I believe its harder to stay debt free that it was to become debt free in the first place! But, for those of you who are wondering about the “how” I have some clear steps for you to take.
First, a little recap:
Five years ago, we started on our debt free journey by taking the home study course of Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University. Just under four years later, we called into the Dave Ramsey show to do our Debt Free Scream – we paid off $42,500 of consumer debt! Next up is our mortgage debt which is on track to be paid off by 2018.
Hard to believe that in just THREE more years we will no longer owe anyone any money! That feels so great just to say that!
Getting back to where you are now – in debt, not wondering where to start or what to do.
1. Make a Decision
Seriously, this is the hardest part of the whole process. You have to DECIDE that you want to become debt free. Because, you cannot enjoy debt free life until you make a commitment to the process.
2. Have a “Why” or two or three.
Why do you want to be debt free? Really think about it – how will you feel to longer have a credit card payment, a car payment or even a student loan payment?
3. Believe you can do it.
So, realistically, the belief is very small when you start. But, even if you have just a little tiny bit of belief that you can do this then get going! If you don’t believe you can do it, find someone who believes in you. You are not the first person to have debt and become debt free. A great way to build belief is to listen to Debt Free Screams from the Dave Ramsey show. There are plenty on youtube to choose from!
3. Make a Plan
Of course, I would recommend you follow the Baby Steps as outline in Financial Peace University but if that doesn’t appeal to you then find something, anything that does. Go to a bookstore and find a book on money. Google “How to get out of debt”. Whatever you do, DO NOT pay someone to consolidate your debt – that is not really the way to do things.
4. Follow the Plan
Ok, this may seem simple but its really not. People spend ALOT of time making plans and ZERO time putting the plan into action. Debt just doesn’t go away on its own, you have to work at chipping it away one payment at at time. Your plan in step #3 should include specific and measurable goals where you can track your progress.
5. Reward Yourself.
Any debt that is paid in full is a VICTORY and it should be celebrated! Only you can decide what motivates you to keep going – maybe you gave up going out to eat to pay off debt? Then each time a debt is paid off OR after a certain amount of money is paid off, go out to dinner and enjoy! You earned it and deserved it!
Are you ready to live a debt free life? I want to help you! I became a Financial Coach to help people come up with the plans and the accountability needed to put them into action. I will believe in you until you can believe in yourself.
If you let me know you need some help, I’ll give you a FREE 30 minute consultation over the phone.
You ready? Please let me know by filling out the contact form below: