by westchicago

Overcoming Debt, One Step at a Time

In the United States, people have amassed trillions of dollars in debt. In fact, the actual amount of total debt exceeds $13 trillion dollars. This amount includes auto loans, mortgages, credit cards and student loans.

If you’re facing a mountain of debt, it can be overwhelming. After all, how do you even begin to climb out of the pit of debt?

Before you throw up your hands in despair, take a few moments to think about your debt. What caused you to get in debt? How much debt do you have? What can you do to fix the problem?

The good news is there are workable solutions to your problem. Each year, thousands of people climb out of debt for good.

This year, you can be one of them if you take the appropriate steps. Here’s how you can overcome your debt – one step at a time.

Calculate Your Total Debt

Make a complete list of every business (and person) that you owe. Write the amount that you owe next to each name. Add the amounts and write the total on a sheet of paper.

While this step can cause anxiety, it’s a necessary part of the debt elimination process. Resist the urge to skip this step.

Unless you know the amount that you owe, you won’t know how much money additional money you’ll need to earn in order to repay it.

Get a Second, Third or Fourth Source of Income

The majority of people in the United States are in debt because they don’t earn enough money to live within their means. Their low earnings force them to take on extra debt just to survive.

If that’s your situation, the only way for you to get out of debt is if you earn more money. There’s simply no way around it. Here are a few suggestions for additional sources of income.

  • Rent a room in your home.
  • Drive for a ride share program.
  • Sell some of your expensive items (electronics, jewelry, automobiles).
  • Get a part-time job.
  • Start a side business.
  • Sell on Amazon or eBay.

Although you’ll have to sacrifice your time, you must take action. Just think of the relief you’ll feel when you begin to earn enough money to chip away at your debt.

Reduce Your Expenses

There’s another group of people who are in debt because they earn good money, but they spend the majority of their income. These people earn high incomes. However, their monthly expenses exceed their income.

If you this is your issue, this is an easy fix. You must review your monthly expenditures and cut back significantly. Here are a few areas that could be causing problems for your budget.

  • Eating out
  • Shopping
  • Daily incidentals (expensive lattes, snacks, bottled water)

Minimizing your spending is going to require you to say ‘no’ to certain things until you get rid of your debt. This includes expensive concert tickets, weekly bar tabs and designer clothing.

Get Started

It’s not enough to make a plan. You must take action. Decide that you are going to do whatever it takes for you to get rid of the debt in your life.

If you aren’t used to executing your plans, there are tools that can help you. Here are some ideas.

  • Get an accountability partner.
  • Download financial apps.
  • Listen to finance podcasts.
  • Join a debt group.
  • Read finance books.
  • Post your progress on social media.

Get ‘Sick and Tired’ of Being in Debt

It can be more comfortable to wallow in debt than it is to take steps to get out of it. However, you must resist debt complacency at all costs.

Being in debt is expensive financially and emotionally. Decide that you’re no longer willing to pay the price of being in debt.

Make a list of everything that your debt affects. This includes your finances, ability to take trips, sleep patterns and mental fitness.

If you put your mind and actions to it, you can get out of debt. Take these steps and get started on your debt-free journey today.

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