Britain is in the midst of a debt crisis. The average UK citizen now owes a whopping £8,000 in debt – and that’s not even including their mortgage payments! There are millions of people out there who can’t make ends meet, pay off debt and living paycheck to paycheck. They worry that a debt-free future will forever remain an impossible dream.
Here’s another shocking statistic: The Financial Conduct Authority reports that 4.1 million UK adults are in financial difficulty. This means that they are struggling to pay domestic bills and manage their credit repayments.
Does Debt Rule Your Life?
Does all this sound familiar?
If your finances are a mess, I know how you feel. A few years ago, I was drowning in a sea of debt. It all began when I took out a loan during the credit crunch.
Over time, my situation spiralled out of control until I owed 32K. Getting out of debt was one of the crowning achievements of my life. I’m not exaggerating – it’s right up there with graduating from university!
Want to know how to pay off your debt and start living life on your own terms? In a nutshell, here’s how I paid off £32K in just two years:
1. I Committed to Being Debt Free, And I Said “NO!” To Further Debt
This was the turning point. I pledged that I would never again give in to the lure of consumer debt.
You know the phrase, “When you’re in a hole, stop digging?” Never before had I realised the truth of that particular cliché. It’s time to stop relying on credit for those everyday expenses.
2. I Put a Starter Emergency Fund in Place
You’ve got to account for life’s twists and turns. I know you want to pay off your debt, but you absolutely must have a backup fund for those unforeseen expenses. Otherwise, you’ll be tempted to take on yet more debt to get you through a crisis.
I saved up a starter emergency fund of £1,000 to deal with the emergencies and kept it in an accessible Cash ISA.
3. I Found Out the Reasons I Wanted to Be Free of Debt for Good
Do not underestimate the power of finding your “whys”. Ask yourself this – why do you want to pay off your debt?
Until you know the answer to this question, you aren’t going to make significant progress, especially when faced with challenges.
A desire to build real wealth, a wish to wake up in the morning knowing I was out of debt, and the chance to buy my own home were just three of my personal reasons. They fired up my motivation and kept me going.
4. I Found Creative Ways to Boost my Income
I had to get creative when it came to generating extra money. Why? Because the greater your income and the lower your expenses, the less time it will take to pay off your debt.
I had a full-time job, so taking on lots of extra work wasn’t an option. However, I did manage to sell some of my unwanted clothes, and I took on a bit of freelance work each month.
5. I Found Creative Ways to Reduce My Expenses
This is the other half of the equation. Most of us don’t make the most of our money. We spend too much on goods and services that are unnecessary, overpriced, or both!
For example, I saved a fortune on makeup by switching to a cheaper brand, and I chose not to buy any new clothes for a few months.
6. I Created a Sensible Spending Plan and Allowed for Fun
I allocated some money for fun and the things I love the most, and cut down on the stuff I didn’t need.
You don’t need to live a joyless life just because you are paying off debt. True, you’ll be able to pay it off faster if you spend less, but life is for living! I figured out exactly how much I needed to set aside in order to pay off my debt, ensuring that I also had enough money for a few treats.
7. I Created A Road Map to Get Out of Debt, and I Implemented My Plan
I sat down and made a list of my debts, the minimum payments I needed to make, and the total amount payable in each case. I then made a detailed plan that allowed me to pay them off one by one.
I tackled the smallest debts first, using the snowball method, a proven strategy that breaks down even the largest debts into manageable chunks. I’ve explained how this works in my guide, How To Get Out Of Debt & Stay Out Of Debt.
Then – most importantly – I stuck to this plan religiously.
8. I Focused on Financial Freedom and Wealth Building
Financial security enables you to live the life of your dreams. Pay off your debt and you’ll have made a flying start!
I began building wealth by depositing small amounts into a savings and investment account. You should do the same. Always pay yourself first – however small.Financial security enables you to live the life of your dreams. Click To Tweet
9. I Built a Support System That Kept Me Motivated
There are millions of people out there working to break free from debt, and a lot of them are looking for support! I set up a Facebook group for women looking to achieve financial freedom, and they tell me that the friendships they make have been priceless (if you’ll pardon the pun) when it comes to motivation.
I also told my closest friends about my financial situation, and asked them to cheer me on. It was a bit embarrassing to admit that I was in so much debt, but they were a wonderful source of support.
10. I Celebrated My Wins – Even the Small Victories
You aren’t going to pay off your debt overnight. This is a marathon, not a sprint. If you wait until the end to reward yourself, you’ll get disheartened along the way. Self-denial isn’t going to do you any favours.
I found that enjoyable but inexpensive rewards boosted my spirits. For instance, I held a fabulous dinner party to celebrate paying off my first credit card!
11. I Never Gave Up
Giving up was not an option. Some days I felt discouraged, but I always focused on my goal. I knew what I wanted – a debt-free life – and I was going to get it!
YOU Can Pay Off Your Debt Too!
If I can do it, so can you. You don’t have to wait for a miracle, an inheritance, or a succession of big promotions at work. (What a relief!)
Debt can be overwhelming, scary, and confusing. Believe me, I’ve been there! I’m so passionate about helping other women get out of debt and that I’ve written a guide, How To Get Out Of Debt & Stay Out Of Debt.
If you follow my step-by-step plan, I promise that you’ll break free from the chains of debt. There’s no fluff, no nonsense, and you definitely don’t need a degree in maths or economics to use it!
Still not sure? Still reluctant to take action? Let’s do a thought experiment.
What’s Your Future?
Picture your life six weeks, six months, and six years from now.
Do you really want to continue living with the burden of debt? Can you face the prospect of wasting hours, days, weeks, months, or even years worrying about paying off a huge sum of money that will only increase as time goes by?
Or do you want to wake up every day basking in your financial freedom? Wouldn’t you prefer to be working in a career you love, rather than a job you do only because it pays the bills?
Your life is precious. Don’t waste your time and energy feeding your debt. Download your copy and start tackling it TODAY. It’s one of the best investments you’ll ever make.
Over to you
What are your personal reasons for breaking free from debt? Do you have any tips for paying off debt? Share with us in the comments below.
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