We’ve all been there. That moment when you receive a stack of bills in the mail, knowing that you have no way to pay even a fraction of the amount people are asking of you. Facing your debt burden is difficult, but it doesn’t have to be shameful. Being in debt doesn’t mean you’re a bad person. It just means that you need an action plan to turn your credit around.
Take a Deep Breath
You’re finding yourself in a tough situation- you have a pile of debts and it feels like you have 1000 pounds sitting on your shoulders. I’m here to tell you that your debt isn’t going to kill you. So, take a deep breath and know that you can get yourself out of your debt in a meaningful and productive way.
Blast from the Past
A 2012 study for the Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education shows that your financial habits begin to develop in adolescence. Your family’s habits and attitudes towards money during childhood can predict what your financial experiences will be later in life. While it is important to take responsibility for your debt, it is also important to recognize that your debt is likely the product of long standing habits that started as a child or teenager. By examining those habits, you can understand how to change them. Changing habits takes time, so give yourself the space and permission to do so.
Get Real About Your Debt
Getting out of debt is demanding work. It requires you to get real about your debt. It’s time to take an honest look at exactly how much you owe and create a realistic plan on how you are going to pay it off. This is the time to pull out all your credit cards, loan documents and bills and write out exactly how much you owe and to whom. List the amounts, interest rate and due dates for each debt. No debt amount is too small to list out. Once you’ve written down every penny you owe, you can start to develop your plan for getting out of debt.
Now that you’ve listed out your debt, it’s time to start taking baby steps towards pulling yourself out. It’s time to educate yourself on how to manage your finances. There are many free online resources that can help you understand financial basics and give you concrete steps to pull yourself out of debt. Recognizing your need for information and taking steps to educate yourself isn’t shameful: it’s admirable.
We offer many free resources, including this blog, weekly live credit education conference calls hosted by our founder, credit expert George Cole, financial calculators, and an online personal finance course that comes with your credit restoration program.
It can be difficult to do hard things by yourself. That’s where an accountability partner can come in handy. This can be someone official, like a financial planner. Or it can be your best friend. Either way, it’s someone you can check in with who will encourage you to continue your path to pay down your debt. Having someone who can be your cheerleader can keep you out of depression and help you stay positive about your goals.
Be Kind to Yourself
You’re working hard at paying down your debt. You may face setbacks. But throughout the process, remember to be kind to yourself. Take time to celebrate with a non-monetary reward to celebrate your milestones. Ideas include a relaxing bubble bath, a hike in the mountains, or an enjoyable read of a library book. These are all ways you can reward yourself for putting in the challenging work of paying down your debt and reminding yourself that you aren’t a bad person. Self-care is essential when we’re working hard.
The most important thing for you to remember is that you are not in this alone. The credit experts at NCES are on your side – ready to help you fight back against a credit scoring system that is stacked against consumers.
I’m ready to restore my credit! Schedule my free consultation today.
If you have any questions, please give us a call at 770-952-5168 or contact us online.
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Other articles that may interest you:
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Keeping the Wolves at Bay – Safely Communicating With Debt Collectors
7 Ways to Improve Your Credit
This information is intended for informational and educational purposes only and not as legal advice. If you have concerns about your credit report, harassment, identity theft, illegal collections activity, garnishments, or property liens, you should consult an attorney who specializes in consumer rights and defense.