When you read the title of this post, what did you feel?
Did you feel excitement as you pictured what it would be like to have ZERO debt? No credit cards, no mortgage, no student loans, no car payment? Can you imagine what that would FEEL like?
COMPLETE FINANCIAL FREEDOM.
I think about all kinds of things on a daily basis—my mind is always working and going off on tangents (hence my phrase “crazy brain”). I’ve thought about things like “If I lived in a trailer, I’d be debt free.” I actually like the idea of living in a double-wide sometimes. The thought of the VOLUME of disposable income I’d have gets me excited! The thought of how little STUFF I could fit in there gets me excited too!
Here’s the thing, when we make more we spend more.
So, every time we say to ourselves, “If I just get a raise” or “If I just get that bonus” and then we get it, what do we do with the money? Do we pay off debt with it? Or do we start making an extra trip to Starbucks or spend a little more at the store?
I used to think the people in the big houses were rich.
I remember a day when I thought the people with the big fancy houses were rich. Well, newsflash; they aren’t. Ok, ok, some of them MIGHT be, but I know plenty of them that are living paycheck to paycheck where if they just lived a little differently they COULD be wealthy and debt free! Imagine, making hundreds of thousands of dollars a year and having a mortgage on a multi-million dollar home. Now imagine making the same money and having a modest home and doing all the things you’ve ever wanted to do? We all live within our means (or slightly outside of them).
What is driving these poor decisions?
Well, in my opinion, part of it is EGO. If we are making more money we want to FEEL like we are. We buy nicer clothes, a nicer house, and start getting our hair highlighted. We watch a lot of TV and see the movie stars and reality TV stars. We look at Pinterest and Facebook and see how other people live and want to show that we SUCCESSFUL. In our minds STUFF = SUCCESS but it doesn’t.
STUFF = STRESS!
The more stuff we have, the more stress we have, period. I look around my house and I see stuff. Stuff I don’t need. Don’t get me wrong, I’m NOT a hoarder but I definitely have my share of things. One day I diffused some Stress Away and added a little Lemon Myrtle. Something about that combo flipped a switch in my anti-hoarder brain. I flew into action and emptied my closet of SIXTEEN bags of clothes and shoes. Most of those clothes I had been saving for YEARS with the mindset that I would eventually need it or I would sell them—yeah right. We know how THAT goes!
Where do we start to make a change?
I’ve given some thought to this question because I am in this position right now. I want to own EVERYTHING. I don’t even want a mortgage anymore. That is a big shift for me. I had in my mind that if we could afford the monthly payments than who cares if we have a mortgage? Now I’m adding that onto the list of my debt and really looking at it.
Live like you’re downsizing.
This is the approach I am taking. I’m putting in my brain that we are going to downsize. We are moving from a 4000 square foot home to 2000. We are going to have to get rid of a lot of stuff that’s for sure! The funny thing is, this is actually something we are considering. Why not? We love to travel and do it often. All we need is a landing pad. When you work a job that doesn’t chain you to a location you can do that! If we lived a little more frugally we could be living on my income alone and have 100% FREEDOM OF LOCATION. So, why are we restraining ourselves? This pretty much sums it up….
Here are some of the tools you can use to learn how to start chipping away at debt:
Here is what I REALLY want to know, if you had just a couple extra hundred dollars a month, what kind of impact would that have on your life? How quickly could you chip away at that debt? What would it feel like if you were paying down that credit card every month, little by little until it was just a memory?
In case you missed my email….
I’m thinking about getting a group of us together to support each other. You know me a little but I don’t know YOU nearly enough. I’d love to see if we would be a good match to provide mutual support. I’m thinking a group of 10 people or so would be just right. Not too big but just big enough so we’ll all get some value. I really want to stick to my goals and I’m sure you do too. So, if you’re as serious as I am about doing this then lets do it! Please fill out this form and we can chat to see if you’d be a good fit!
Thanks for reading! Do you feel the same way I do? Tell me about YOUR strategies to make a change.
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Photo credit: mj0007