In my experience, people who get out of debt do so primarily through hard work, sacrifice, and persistence.
In fact, I think the road to the debt free life is built by the hands of sacrifice.
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Why Must You Sacrifice To Get Out of Debt?
Since sacrifice involves giving up something, I’m going to say the opposite of sacrifice is indulgence. Financially speaking, indulgence would be spending without any control. It is purchasing whatever thy heart does desire. Sacrifice would mean giving up something.
Unfortunately, there are many pathways into debt. In this post, I’m going to focus on the most common reason of debt – indulgence.
If you are in debt because you have made a habit of spending more than you earn, then the only receipt for getting out of debt will be sacrifice.
Consider the example of buying a car. If you want it now, your only option will be to get car payments. However, if you have a sense of control, you will save up until you can pay cash for a car.
Things I Would Not Sacrifice To Get Out of Debt
Here are a list of things I would not sacrifice on a journey to get out of debt.
Since I believe giving is a spiritual activity, I would continue to give in debt.
2. Memories and experiences
If debt is one type of slavery, I certainly wouldn’t want to exchange it for another type of slavery – a dull, meaningless life.
3. Family and relationships
In different lists I’ve seen on family stressors, money issues are usually very high on the list, but divorce is always higher. If in an effort to get out of debt, if you ignore or neglect your family beyond a mutually agreed on period, then your get out of debt journey might unintentionally have a relational cost.
When getting out of debt, families need to communicate very clearly about motives, intentions, and expectations. Getting a second part time job or turning a hobby into a source income is a common way of paying off debt. However, if in an effort to get rid of debt you start lose your family, you need to regroup, refocus, and rewrite a plan to get out of debt.
Creativity: The Key To Getting Out of Debt & Having Fun
Without creativity, you might think that you need to choose to either get out of debt or have some good memories and experiences. But, you can have both. In fact, these things I listed above are mutually inclusive.
With your family relationship, sometimes sacrificing something for a short term loss will provide long term gains. A family might decide that one parent will work like crazy for a designated amount of time (6 months – 2 years) so that they can get out of debt. They know that temporary sacrifice will give a greater return for their family in the long run. During that time, they creatively work at having a healthy family relationship and getting out of debt.
Creative Examples When Getting Out of Debt
Giving: It might be that you cannot give money, but instead you focus on giving some of your other resources. This conscientious decision means that you understand giving is about more than money, and you can give something more valuable – your time.
Families and relationships: Getting a second job does not necessarily mean more time away from the family. Perhaps you can find a job that allows you to work during hours when your family might otherwise be sleeping. Consider something like early morning newspaper delivery or writing in the evening.
You might think that because you are in debt you can’t go on vacation. You can go on vacation, you just can’t spend much money. How about a staycation?
Memories and experiences: It is possible to be frugal and have fun. Unfortunately, a lot of people think those two things are diametrically opposed. A park can be as fun as a theater. A picnic at the beach can be as much fun as dinner at a restaurant.
You can keep the memories and experiences without spending dollars.
What do you think – is it possible to have it all? Are some things not worth sacrificing to get out of debt?