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What’s the hardest part of starting down the road to being debt-free? Answer: admitting you haven’t done it right so far, or at best, haven’t done it good enough.

Admitting you’ve done a sorry job handling your money or that you’ve fallen for all the consumer marketing gimmicks is not easy. Often, we want to make excuses and justify our debt when most of the time it’s the result of one thing: buying a lifestyle your income cannot afford. You don’t have to be an "addict" or "out of control" to get in debt. It’s a very simple and devious formula: consistently spend more money than you make over a period of time, and as sure as the sun rising in the east, you’ll find yourself in debt.

Here’s what you have to do: 1) Admit you’ve not been diligent in the area of finances, 2) recognize your impulsive spending habits, and 3) commit to the reasons why you SHOULD be debt-free. No excuses, no whining, no B.S.


With rare exceptions, people primarily get into debt because they want more lifestyle than they can afford. Understand that, and you are on your way.

Also, take comfort, or at least refuge, in the fact that MOST people have been down this road. It’s not like you are some special case of extra stupid. In fact, you can be encouraged that you are now part of the VERY VERY small percentage of people who actually care about getting out of debt, and want to do something about it.

I’ve been in and out of debt 2 or 3 times in my life. The first couple of times I never learned how to STAY OUT of debt which is just as important as getting out of debt in the first place.

Life Without Debt covers this topic.

What are your questions about personal finance and living free of debt?