One of the hardest things to do when you are in debt is to face it head on. It is far easier to bury your head in the sand, but isn’t that the reason you are in debt in the first place.
DEBT Facing the Reality
According to www.themoneycharity.org.uk the level of unsecured debt in the UK is at its highest level since 2008, with the average household owing over £7000. They also state that £68.5 billion is owed on credit cards.
Are you in Control?
Sometimes you can even convince yourself that you are in control. If you are making your monthly repayments easily every month, you may ask yourself if you really need to be concerned.
A friend of mine got in to dreadful credit card debt. She never looked at the full amount of what she owed on each credit card. Her only concern was the total amount of the monthly repayment. As long as she could afford to pay that each month she didn’t consider herself to be in debt.
Until life threw her a curve ball. Her husband walked out!
All of a sudden she was faced with paying all the bills and rent as well as trying to cover the monthly repayments and she couldn’t manage.
When she finally sat down and faced the reality, she had 4 credit cards which were maxed out. Her total debt was around £15,000. She had no claim on her husband, all the money she had spent had been on things for herself or gifts for others. This explained why she could eat out regularly, have expensive nights out with friends, have two or three holidays abroad each year, drive a new car. She had all these things but hadn’t actually paid for any of them in full.
And that reality is what people don’t see. The strange thing is, some of her ‘so called’ friends drifted away over time. Once she decided to tackle her debt, she had to cut back. That meant no nights out. Instead, her true friends were happy to take it in turns to meet at each others homes for a meal and a drink but sadly others weren’t. She no longer sees them now and found that really difficult to deal with.
The car was sold and replaced with a cheaper one, her fancy clothes were sold and the holidays stopped. All of a sudden when it was a case of keeping a roof over your head and being able to afford to eat, nothing else seemed to matter.
She lived to tell the tale though and when I told her I was creating my Debt Busting – Get Set for Success! Course, she asked me to tell you her story and to pass on the following message:
Don’t bury your head in the sand. I thought I had a great life and could spend whatever I wanted without thinking about the consequences but it wasn’t real. Deep down I knew I owed a lot of money but I just didn’t acknowledge this as debt. I didn’t have bayliffs knocking at my door or companies hassling me for money.
When my husband left, with major adjustments to my spending, I was fortunate to be able to afford to pay all the necessary bills whilst starting to pay off my debt. The part I found the hardest was having to pay back money I had spent on things that I no longer had (I had to sell many items to raise the money to start paying it back). I dread to think how much money has been wasted on interest payments over the years.
There is one thing for certain, I will never let myself get into that situation again. Although, I do still have to use my credit card occasionally, now it is paid off as soon as possible. I no longer see the minimum payments as a comfortable payment to make.
At the beginning, I found getting organised and creating a plan of action quite difficult. My head was so full of worry and stress that I couldn’t seem to see the way forward. I wish I’d had this course to follow when I decided to take my spending under control.
I am not going to tell you it is easy, it isn’t. It takes dedication and hard work but it is so worth it in the end. Oh and if I can do it, anyone can – including you!
Face the Reality
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