5 Steps To Stop Drowning In Debt
Christmas is over and the bills are starting to come in. You promised yourself this Christmas was going to be different. But here you are, once again, and still, drowning in debt. Start this new year off on a different foot by taking hold of your debt. Show your debt who is boss!
Be EMPOWERED towards a HOPE and a FUTURE!
When your finances are heading down the wrong path and your debt is spiraling out of control, you need to stop. Stand back, evaluate and be wise. Take stock and control of the direction you are going in. You have choices and the gift of free will.
Here are 5 steps you can take to prevent you from getting into further debt, and to help you overcome and even eliminate what you are currently dealing with. Use these tips to help you begin moving in the right direction financially.
1. Put Your Credit Card In A Drawer At Home
If you have a difficult time saying “NO” to purchases, then you are going to have to get tough with yourself. Physically remove your credit card out of your wallet! Because, unlike the picture here, you can’t walk around with the clamp on your wallet. So you need to be that clamp and remove the credit card from your wallet.
Put your credit card in a safe place at home. Out of sight. Put it in a place such as your sock drawer. On the bottom. You need to keep it somewhere safe, but not anywhere near the stores!
Make the firm decision that you will leave it there and will only take it out when absolutely necessary. Make yourself promise to only use it in the case of an emergency—and hey, not everything is an emergency. Remember, you are doing this for you—so don’t try to trick yourself.
This alone will help force you to be more cautious in your spending. Instead of doing the “buy now, pay later” scenario—you have to figure out how to “buy now—pay now” instead.
Hmm, suddenly that item doesn’t look as necessary as you first thought, does it? No cash—no buy!
2. Cancel Any Retail Store Credit Cards
Retail store credit cards typically have high interest rates. Often in the high 20% range. It is also difficult to keep from spending when you feel like you have several options as to where the money will come from. Get rid of these cards and keep to only one main credit card. (Which is hopefully the one you have taken from your wallet and placed in a safe place at home.)
Streamlining your credit cards down to just 1 will help you keep track of your bills better too. And face it, don’t you have enough bills now? Why do you want several credit card bills coming at you too?
Your finances are stretched thin now—after all, if you had the money, why would you even have the credit cards, right?
The idea of credit cards for an emergency is nice, but that is not how 90% of us use them. We use them for everything and everyday.
Only you can take control of your financial situation and change your buying habits. So, cancel any retail store credit cards and put yourself on a credit card diet. Try to trim it back to just 1 major credit card—for those emergencies.
And until such an emergency, put that major credit card in a drawer like suggested earlier.
3. Pay Back Your Debt As Quickly As Possible
If you have a balance owing on one or more credit cards, now is the time to start paying that debt off.
First—make sure you are paying the monthly minimum amounts—that keeps your card debt from going into default. Credit card debt in default can really mess up your credit score in a big hurry. So let’s have you start swimming and stop drowning.
Second—stop using your credit cards. Try to maintain the debt at this point rather than increasing the debt by buying things on your credit card. Remember that sock drawer? Put that card away already!
Third—pull out your credit card bills. Look them over.
- Which one has the most owing?
- What is the least owing?
- Look at the interest rates too. The highest and the lowest.
See which one can be eliminated the fastest. Sometimes it is the smallest owing amount. Or perhaps it is the one with the highest interest rate. You need to make that decision. Often, personally, because I like to see quick results, I will attack the smallest owing amounts first. This way I can look at the accomplishment of getting rid of that bill. Then I can take that amount and start adding it to the next lowest bill. This way, by snowballing upwards, the bills can be paid off more quickly. So, if you need the encouragement of seeing faster results—pay the smallest one off first.
The faster you can pay off the debt, the faster you stop paying the outrageous interest rates.
4. Consider A Second Job
If you can work even an extra day per week, it can help you pay back your debt sooner. At the very least, it may give you that extra wiggle room so that you do not get yourself further into debt. It will take up some of your free time, but will be worth the sacrifice in the long run.
It could be as simple as babysitting for someone else. You could do some housecleaning for a local senior. Or perhaps you are skilled at the computer and could help do some virtual assistance for a business website.
There are many ways you may be able to make some extra money. Try decluttering and selling items too.
But the key here is to use this extra money to fight down your debt—not just to buy more things. Even an extra $20 a week will mean that you have an extra $80 a month to put towards a bill you owe.
Be accountable to you—use it to pay down your debt. This way the money you make from your regular income source can be used to maintain current bills. This extra money is just to pay down the debt!
5. Creatively Find As Many Ways To Save As Possible
By visiting us here at Free Stuff 4 Daily Needs today you are already showing that you are trying to find as many ways to save money as possible.
Well, let us help you find more creative ways to save money.
- Coupon clipping
- become a shopping C.S.I.
- frugal friday shopping
- reduce your electricity bill
- dirty dishes cost you money
- get a thermal mug and take your own coffee to go
- meal planning
- crock pot cooking
- Instant Pot cooking
Look for every way possible to save money. Join the Free Stuff 4 Daily Needs email list and you’ll find all kinds of ways to help you save money each and every week. Sign up today and we’ll start sending you some freebies today to get you started.
Stop spending on unnecessary purchases in order to save. Many items you will discover you didn’t really need anyhow.
These 5 Steps To Stop Drowning In Debt might seem like a chore at first, however, the benefits are endless. But start by putting the credit card away, pay down the existing debt, and get more creative on how to save and spend your hard earned money.
Start this new year by being EMPOWERED towards a HOPE and a FUTURE
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