- Sarah Bengtsson
Let's talk about debt
“The man who never has money enough to pay his debts has too much of something else.”
James Lendall Basford
Let’s first take a moment to acknowledge that you are not alone. Chances are that you will have some kind of debt, whether it’s a mortgage, student loans, or credit cards. The whole mindfulness movement of “live in the moment” can trick us into believing that the present moment is all we have, but the truth is that every action you take in your life should build towards the future that you want.
Debt allows us to borrow against one of our thousands of potential futures, the main problem being, the future doesn’t exist in the present. It is only a potential, and you are still the one responsible for creating that reality for yourself. Don’t you want to give yourself the best possible chance to succeed?
However, it is not all bad. Again, we have to look at what life we want to build for ourselves and then differentiate between good and bad debt. Good debt is the kind of debt that you are in control over, that allows you to build towards your future and that you have a solid plan for paying off. Bad debt is all the other. Yes it’s true. All the other.
Don’t trust me? Check in with yourself. When you think about this debt that you owe, how does it make you feel? Frustrated? Embarrassed? Depressed? That is common! Money is people’s biggest stressor and stress creates disease in your body. You’re not doing yourself any favors by holding on to it, it’s not worth it.
Often, these common check-lists about debt that circulates in the personal finance space seem to forget the crucial question: What got you in debt in the first place?. If you cannot answer it, or choose to dismiss it, you will more likely than not end up there again. This is an aspect of owning responsibility over your own life – your money/finances included.
The way to avoid debt is to realize that you should only acquire something personally, for your own use, if you can completely pay for it at that moment. If you can’t afford something you want, or it’s a stretch, learn to accept you can’t afford it right now. Maybe you’re not supposed to have the thing just yet. Take a chill pill.
The way out of debt is to become clear on what you want, make changes, and stick to a plan.
Stop borrowing from your future self.
Set yourself up for success.
Ps. Check out my online workshop about debt, helping you ditching debt for good!