5 Reasons To Pay Off Debt
Peace out, friends. It is time that we had a little talk. While yes, I would love nothing more than to go out to eat with you… for the seventh time this month. And yes, I would love to grab coffee at the local hotspot down the street… even though I brewed myself a pot of coffee at home this morning. And of course, I would love to go clothes shopping with you… for an outfit for an event that doesn’t exist yet. But here is the thing. We are s-a-wimming in debt. You know, back when I thought it was a good idea to spend five years at a private college and take out every single penny (+ money for a MacBook + rent money each month for my crappy apartment + probably some extra money for groceries) in student loans. Stupid. You know what else is stupid? All of our credit card debt. Yeah, that is ridiculous. And now that I am an, ahem, grown adult now you can add an outrageous amount of medical bills to that. Apparently having babies and paying for surgeries + braces is far from cheap. Throw all of that together and you have one giant freaking mess.
I’m over it. So sick and tired of it. And in order to get out from under all of our debt, we need to make some changes. Not necessarily changes that I am a fan of, but definitely necessary if we want to be debt free. Which we totally do. Here are my top five reasons for getting out of debt as quickly as you can…
Too much freaking paperwork to keep track of.
Seriously. Every single time I check the mailbox I bring back at least 5 envelopes that I have to open, roll my eyes at & sigh, and feel sick to my stomach over. After I open each statement and bill I toss it in this overflowing black bin in my kitchen. That bin of papers is now spreading and starting to take up precious counter space. I leave it in there until I have taken care of it and then it just sits there until I find the time to file it downstairs in the filing cabinet. What. A Process. If we didn’t have so many freaking bills, that black bin would be empty and the stark white papers wouldn’t be slowly taking over my kitchen. More counter space = one happier momma.
Less to remember.
It isn’t a perfect system, but I have tired to adopt the system of writing in all of our bill totals and due dates in my planner. When the month is ending I try to fill in all of the due dates for the next month fully equipped with a little box that I can check off once it has been paid. I am totally a list person and I get a strange sense of satisfaction when I can cross things off my list or check off that little box. But with so many due dates and totals to remember, it would be much easier if there were none. Zip. Nadda.
This one is pretty self explanatory. The less money that we pay towards paying off our debt, the more money that we have to go on family vacations. Just think if you put away the same amount of money that you are paying towards your debt each month & how much you could have for a vay-cay! You could go on some seriously awesome trips with that instead of putting it towards stupid decisions from the past. Hello, sign me up for that.
Paychecks are gone before I get them.
One thing that my parents instilled in me is to work hard. Really, really hard. I have never minded picking up extra shifts here and there for extra money (usually to go shopping with but that is besides the point!). The problem is that I work hard for my paycheck, but by the time I actually get paid my money is already gone to cover our debt. [Enter long dramatic sigh here.] Wouldn’t it be nice to work hard and then get to actually enjoy “the fruits of my labor.” I always hated that saying, but it seems fitting here. It would make working extra seem so much more enjoyable if I could do something with it instead of writing yet another check to pay my credit cards off. Lame.
More to invest in our kids.
I want our kids to be involved in all kinds of things as they grow up and that usually costs money. A lot of money. Dance classes and soccer leagues do not pay for themselves. I want our kids to do anything and everything that they want. And I want to be able to say yes every time they want to start something new. With all of this crappy, stupid debt hanging over our heads it will be much more difficult to do those things. And I don’t want that. College also costs a ton, so we need to be saving for that starting now. I want them to have a nice little egg to get them started when they head off to college. You know, so they don’t make the same stupid mistakes that I did like put a laptop on a student loan!
Enough said. I also want the ability to give generously whenever I want. That doesn’t just happen overnight.
So, there you have it friends. I’m sorry that I was not wise in my 20’s. I’m sorry that we won’t get to share meals over a nice meal out, or talk for hours over coffee at a coffeeshop as often as we had before. However, I’m not sorry that we are finally buckling down to tackle this thing head on. We can’t just wish the debt away, but we have to work really hard for hopefully a short time. Gazelle intensity, right? Thank you, Dave Ramsey. Don’t worry friends. When we have finally kicked most of our debt to the curve maybe we can take you out for dinner and coffee.