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It’s no doubt, success and exceptional personal finance management depend on top-notch organization and proper planning. Despite the best-laid plans, however, it is common to fall behind and into a vicious cycle of debt. A variety of reasons can lead to such situations; a sudden illness, job loss, impulse buying, and emotional spending, among others.
Whatever the cause, it is never too late to recover and get back on track. The first step to redemption involves coming to terms with your predicament and realizing the urgency to swing into action. During such a moment, tough choices and a few sacrifices may have to be made, but this will be worth the effort in the long run. So what are the remedies?
Debt cannot be tackled effectively if expenditure remains unaccounted for. This is where a budget comes in. If you do not have a budget at this point, draw up one, and stick to it religiously. This will ensure all the holes associated with unnecessary spending ware plugged. If a budget already exists, revisit it and start the process of strict adherence afresh; this time, with resolve and purpose. Remember, a budget is the best tool to conclusively get your financial status out of the red. With a detailed budget, you can track progress, see where shortfalls occur and establish areas that require improvement.
To offset debt, you have to do away with gratuitous spending. Talk to friends and family about your current situation. This way, they can better comprehend why you will pass for a night out or a weekend camping trip. This said, ensure all your earnings are accounted for, down to the last penny.
Debt is a double-edged sword. Notably, there is a helpful and destructive debt. An example of the former is a car loan or mortgage. The two can be systematically paid off in monthly installments. Besides, a vehicle and home are necessities; not luxuries.
Destructive debt, on the other hand, is a case where you overindulge in the finer things in life. Before you notice, debt levels will rise out of control, and your income will no longer be sufficient to repay them.
The best way to approach this is to calculate all the money you owe, especially those from credit cards. Factor it into the earlier drawn up budget in a column of its own. You can then start making partial payments until the entire amount is cleared.
Saving some of your income for a rainy day is an example of a visible goal towards financial stability. It does not matter how small the amounts are, for starters. With time, and as you stabilize, the progress will be crystal clear. Remember to reward yourself sparingly for every milestone achieved. This is a practical way to inspire effort and urge you on. Always purpose to share your experiences and challenges with close friends and family for moral support.
Nobody is born in debt, but the inevitable happens when we least expect it. However, this does not mean it is the end of the road. With discipline, financial woes are reversible no matter how heavy they may seem. At the end of the day, the satisfaction, peace of mind and security that financial stability bestows on your well-being is liberating.