Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Debt Is a Thief




If I could turn back time, I would make better choices. I'd be more careful of how we spent our money. I would not go into debt with the exception of buying a house and then it would be paid off as quickly as possible. I'd have an above average emergency fund. I'd have to learn to cook and bake from scratch much earlier in our marriage (I was known as the queen of the microwave in those early years!).

Why? 

Because debt is a thief. It is the destroyer of peace. It steals opportunities - like making a career change and having a job you would love but can't take because the pay is lower and you're up to your eyeballs in debt. 

It makes you feel guilty that you can't give your children more experiences. It whispers that buying this thing or that will make you happier, that your life will be better, that you will be more attrtactive.

It's all lies!

I have been ruthlessly decluttering and every time I get rid of more stuff, I feel better, lighter, and I breathe easier. There is less to clean and maintain giving me more free time to do things I enjoy.I believe in having nice things, but I don't want my home overflowing. Hoarders, anyone?

It took a long while for me to reach the point of enough and even longer for my husband to, but now we are working together as a team. We have to. It's sink or swim.

I'm willing to do whatever it takes to rebuild our financial life on a firm foundation. I will work my fingers to the bone in order to be free from debt's bondage and have peace of mind.

Learn from my mistakes before you're in to deep, friends.

16 comments:

Mrs. B, a very peculiar person said...

Hi Tracy,

You are so right ... Debt is a thief. I am praying for you and your family as you all work toward becoming debt free.
Blessings,
Mrs.B

Terri Cheney said...

Going through my old journals these past few days and I found one that I wrote during that time when we were heavily in debt and my financial infidelity added to the burden of worry. Tracy over and over and over again, I found myself thanking God for teaching me what would really bring peace in my life and for helping me to turn my life around. SIX years after writing in that journal we became debt free. It was hard at times and yes, we had a windfall that helped make it happen, but if we hadn't had that windfall I realized we'd have still been debt free today because my mindset WAS different. Hang in there. You can do this. It will happen. When you're struggling look UP and then keep going!

Wendy said...

Tracy, I was just wondering if you are counting your mortgage into the amount you posted that you owe,$53,183.68. Just curious.
-Wendy

Shelley said...

If you haven't read The Complete Tightwad Gazette as yet, I highly recommend it. Her editorials helped me change the way I looked at being frugal and that was about 90% of the initial battle for me. I came to think of it as being fun to be frugal. I have had all her newsletters for years and still mine them for ideas I haven't yet tried. Some are now out of date (she didn't value computers back in the 90s but has since changed her mind), but still well worth reading. Might find it in the library?

Tracy said...

Thank you, Mrs. B. :)

Shelly, I have the book. Thank you for commenting!

Wendy, our home is not included in that amount.

Terri, it is no secret that I admire you so much for so many things. Thank you for the encouragement! It feels so overwhelming right now. I think I just need to step back and breathe. I CAN do this!! :)

Wendy said...

Tracy, you are certainly not alone in this endeavor. There are so many people out there, myself included, who find themselves overwhelmed by the out-of-control nature of debt! I will pray for you, and ask that you do the same for me! It's definitely a mind-set to resolve to get out from under. But, it can be done! Keep posting about your progress!
-Wendy

Patty said...

Tracy, I'm so glad I found your blog. I really want to encourage you in this big step you are taking to become debt free! You can do this! And, down the road, you'll be able to be an encouragement to others who are in debt and feel they'll never make it out alive. The most important thing that my husband and I did when we were getting out of debt (and absolutely still do to this day) is use a budget. If you haven't read Dave Ramsey's "Total Money Makeover", I highly recommend it. It was the key to our success. If you can find his class "Financial Peace" at a local church, take it. It's really life changing if you're willing to make the necessary changes. You're in my prayers! Best wishes!

Theresa F said...

The Bible is so right, "the borrower is servant to the lender"....in so many many ways.

Tracy said...

Wendy, will do!

Patty, I have Dave Ramsey's books, but I prefer Mary Hunt's Debt-Proof Living. The principles are basically the same I believe.

Welcome Theresa F.

janice15 said...

You kno I have never owned a credit card.. I only have my bank card which is direct.. I refuse to get rolled up in credit.. but now I stress over my moms credit cards and she is dying.. its really sad what life does if we aren't careful. I wish you success my dear..with love Janice

Lil said...

So very true! I've been saving up for a new digital camera upgrade and it would be so easy to just go buy it on credit. I also think I'll be able to appreciate it MUCH more if I save for it rather than just buy it. It IS worth the wait!

Susan in SC said...

Money can't buy you happiness but having debt will rob you of happiness! You are not alone. There are lots of us on a financial diet!

Tracy said...

Janice - we owe less than $2,500 on two credit cards, which I hope to pay off this year. Thank you for visiting!

Lil - very true! Good luck on saving for your camera.

Susan - nice to hear from you! :D

Cash Only Living said...

Good for you on all of your hard work to get out of debt! I think people don't feel the weight of debt (or clutter for that matter) until they are buried in it then the response is a mixture of panic and the overwhelming sense that you can't get unburied. But you are definitely moving in the right direction!

Tracy said...

Cash Only Living - goodness knows I'm trying my hardest to get us back on the right track! Thanks for commenting. :)

Penelope said...

I agree with this so much! We went over our heads with spending and are now trying to dig ourselves out of the hole, and it's STRESSFUL!