I was feeling down. Defeated. Unaccomplished. Like a failure.
Then I had an idea. I was driving home from work yesterday and it hit me. I have been trying to figure out how to get ahead the wrong way. Sure I was looking at how to increase my income. I am still am. But I still have debt. Debt I am falling behind on. Debt that I am wondering how I can get out from under while still maintaining my family’s needs.
I don’t want to say that I have been going at this all wrong. Because I don’t think I have. But I have been focusing on the wrong part. Dave Ramsey has some very helpful tools. Ones that I am still using. But I have been too focused on my emergency fund. Yes I know it is important. I get that. I know that. But I am really tired of debt collectors calling multiple times a day. I know I owe, trust me I know. And it’s not that I don’t want to pay, it’s that I can’t pay what you want me to. So with my husband, we sat down and laid everything out on the table.
Each month we are going to focus on just one debt that we can pay down significantly to a more manageable amount, or completely pay off. Obviously paying it off is more ideal. But some of our debts are a little larger than I like to admit. With this strategy, we will have multiple debt paid off come January 1st 2017. Not all of our debts, but a good amount. We are talking at least $6000. $6000 in six months. I think that is impressive. It may be more, but at least $6K by the end of the year. That even includes 2 student loans. While we wont have the $1000 emergency fund that Dave Ramsey suggests, it will free up some money to be able to save that emergency fund money.
This plan means a lot of sacrifices. A meager Christmas for our children. And meager birthday parties. But it is ok. I will mean that by the end of 2017 we should only owe on our 2 big student loans. And that is ok by me. If I can pay off all consume credit card debt by December 31, 2017 I will see that as a victory. We did not get into debt overnight. We will not get out overnight. But we will get out.
I went to church about a month ago (I go off an on) and while I am usually just sitting in the back listening to the sermon. But about a month ago I felt the pull to church to go ask for prayer and guidance. To have Godly hands touch me and pray over me and my family and our finances. I know it sounds silly. Some of you are probably thinking I am lying. But coming from someone who was not raised religiously, someone who doesn’t regularly attend church, who would probably think the same as you, I am telling the truth. I went, I had two Godly souls lay their hands on me and pray for me, with me, to figure our debt and financial situation out. To show me how to do this. Give me guidance. And I got that guidance. Driving home from work. On a holiday. When most people are celebrating with their families. I received the answer I had been searching for. And I felt peace last night. And this morning. My family will come out of this debt. I know we will. And I know that this plan will work. For the first time in many months, I don’t want to shy away from our debt. I’m going full speed ahead in tackling it.