Going into debt starts slowly but tends to escalate. By the time you realize you’re in it deep, it’s already too late. This is why going into debt is so nerve-wracking. Knowing that you owe money can start to consume you, which is why it’s so important to have a plan in place to get yourself out of debt. But just having a plan in place doesn’t do much for your self-esteem when you feel like you might be in debt forever. So, to prevent yourself from ending up in the same situation you are now and to keep your chin up while it’s happening, here are nine inspirational quotes to remind yourself of every day when you’re in debt.
Debts are like children: the smaller they are, the more noise they make.
Debt rarely happens all at once. It’s often the smallest things that can cause our debt to snowball. From nights out with friends to take out coffee to small “treating yourself” gifts like makeup and jewelry–these relatively minor expenses can quickly snowball over time and end up costing you hundreds of dollars a month. Observe your finances to see where your money is going and if you’re using it wisely.
Debt is like any other trap, easy enough to get into, but hard enough to get out of.
Credit cards can easily mislead people into thinking they have more money than they do, which is why they often are the gateway to heavy, trapping debt. Interest on credit cards can be overwhelming, which is why a relatively small amount of debt, like a couple of thousand dollars, can take years and years to pay off if you’re only paying the minimum.
If you have several credit cards or sources of debt, debt consolidation can be a life-saving solution. Companies can help combine your debt into smaller, more manageable payments and a fast-tracked path to getting out of debt.
“A problem is a chance for you to do your best.”– Duke Ellington
Going into debt can feel shameful, but it can also allow you to reassess your finances and where your money is going. As you find ways to manage your debt and get out of debt, it’s also the perfect time to start looking into budgeting and understanding precisely where you spend all your money.
Never spend your money before you have it.
Debt often happens when people assume they have more money than they do, or that they will be getting more money soon. Don’t ever rely on upcoming money that isn’t your hands yet. Whether that’s the hope of selling something for a certain amount, a bonus, or a tax refund, hedging your bets on this money might mean you aren’t as careful with the money you have now.
“Before borrowing money from a friend, decide which you need most.”
If you need to borrow money, think long and hard on where you’re going to be getting that money and how much it’s going to cost you before you agree to the loan. Whether that’s borrowing from a bank and assessing the interest rates, or borrowing from a friend and calculating how fast you can pay them back.
If you must borrow from friends and family, do so only if you know you’ll get the money back to them fast enough that they won’t have to ask for it.
“We must accept finite disappointment, but we must never lose infinite hope.”– Martin Luther King
Debt can be crushing, and it can start to feel like you will spend the rest of your life under the yoke of banks, credit card companies, and ever-mounting debt. However, keeping a positive outlook on your life and your eyes on the prize–in this case, not being in debt–will allow you to move through this difficult time.
“The person who doesn’t know where his next dollar is coming from usually doesn’t know where his last dollar went.”
While some of our debt can be easily tracked back to student loans or mortgages, many people fall into debt or worsen their debt load by not keeping a close eye on their finances. Budgeting is far from fun, but it will help you keep track of every dime you spend, and it helps you hold yourself accountable to your finances.
Knowing exactly how much income you have, when it’s going to come in, and what you owe will help you get a better grasp on your dollars and cents.
“Expect the best. Prepare for the worst. Capitalize on what comes.”
Even as you begin your journey to getting out of debt, start looking forward to saving money for the future. A huge part of having healthy finances is putting yourself in a position where you don’t have to live paycheck to paycheck. Having a robust savings account starts with just pennies and a good habit–the rest grows over time. Ideally, you should have tiered savings that take into account retirement savings, emergency funds, savings for immediate future purchases (like vacations or cars), and savings in case you lose your job. At first, aim to build a $1000 emergency fund that will stop you from going back into debt if you have an unexpected incident that’s going to cost you money.
“The habit of saving is itself an education; it fosters every virtue, teaches self-denial, cultivates the sense of order, trains to forethought, and so broadens the mind.”
Having good habits when it comes to saving money is something that will continue to benefit you throughout your life, which is why it’s essential to cultivate it early. Seeing your savings account as a bill is an excellent way to encourage yourself to put money towards it continually. Make sure you pay yourself first when you get your paycheck. This means having a certain amount of money you put towards savings right away when you get paid and then not touching it–unless you desperately need to.