February 6, 2018
Transformation Tuesday: BABY STEPS TO DEBT FREEDOM!!
I was in the middle of a dead season about seven years ago with a lot of stress weighing on my shoulders. I was always worried about money and my marriage and most days I felt I was wasting my life away at my desk job. Struggling with what I wanted to do with my life (this was before kids of course), I knew there was more that I was missing.
There was a day at work that I turned on the radio and heard some dude talking about a different kind of life, a life that included vacations and family time and most importantly, debt freedom. It was then I realized it was Dave Ramsey, which I had heard of before through my hubby but never really caught on. He is SUCH a motivational person that within minutes of listening to him I got all fired up about getting debt free that I pulled out an excel spreadsheet and began looking over my finances. I called my hubby and said it’s time to start doing a monthly budget meeting (of course he was thrilled at the idea).
Dave is a no BS guy who is a straight shooter which is why he gets A LOT of controversy and A LOT of great listeners too. His main purpose and passion is to help people get out of debt and live a life of freedom that beats EVERYTHING we have been told about living life with debt. I don’t know about you but when I was a teenager I was told by many “smart people” including my parents…ahem…that I should build my credit. This meant getting into debt to pay it off quickly so that you could be trusted as a responsible individual with more credit in the future. WHY DID THIS MAKE SENSE?? I shouldn’t be trusted with more if I can’t buy things with what I currently have. Right?? The old principles led me no where financially except into a pile of debt and unhappiness.
What I love about Dave’s principles is that he encourages you to get back to the basics of grandma’s teaching…live within your means and save up for what you want/need to pay for. You don’t have it? You don’t buy it. Dave goes to the EXTREME when helping people get out of debt. Living like no one else now means driving a beater, getting a flip phone and eating only at your own kitchen table at night. Yes that is correct he has stated plenty of times that “you don’t enter a restaurant (when trying to get debt-free) unless you are working there.
Dave Ramsey pushes you to GIVE IT YOUR ALL when getting out of debt. “Gazelle intensity” he says. Like when gazelle is being chased by a lion you hustle like never before to get your family debt free so you can live and breathe freedom! Sell everything you can and get extra income delivering pizzas if you have to. If you do this for a short amount of time you will not only start to see progress in your finances but in so many other areas of your life. Self control people, it is the real deal!
After beginning the baby step process I have learned a lot of my husband and I. First off I am the nerd of the two of us (never thought I would say that). I like to save and play it safe when it comes to investing our money. He on the other hand is a risk taker and likes spending all of 2 minutes on planning budget for the month. We have had a lot of money discussions that have ended lets just say in a “heated fellowship”.
I also have learned that facing our finances together before the month begins and getting a plan in place has SAVED us plenty of money fights later in the month. We have had better communication not only with our money but it has better helped us be on the same page in our marriage too. Dave Ramsey has stated before that money fights is the #1 cause of divorce in America. You know what? I believe it. We work so hard each and every day, we give our lives so that there is food on the table and a warm bed for our kids to sleep in. Money can be time and life consuming.
While we are not quite debt free yet I can say that we have paid down a TON of student loans (last debt to go). We have paid off two cars and sold a motorcycle. We now are trying to live within our means by doing a budget meeting every month before the month begins. I know it may seem overwhelming at first but Dave Ramsey’s website has a lot of tools to help with this part. I had to embrace the fact that my hubby was going to check out after about 15 minutes of our budget meetings because he is the free spirit of the two of us! Fun fact though, we are still able to get a lot discussed within that time and you know what?? It makes SUCH A DIFFERENCE!! We are on the same page on so many levels which is amazing compared to what it was before.
Give it a try and tell me what you think?? I love comments as well so PLEASE comment below and let me know what you think about this topic!
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