A few months ago my sweet Hubby and I decided to get serious about paying off our debt. Baby step 1 in the Dave Ramsey Financial University program was easy for us. And since we still had quite a bit of our severance (from Hubby losing his job) left, we quickly paid off our van. With that kind of momentum, it set us on fire for more progress.
We were doing it! I marked the debt off on our progress poster and cheered for victory!
Then 3 months later, doubt set in as we calculated our student loan interest. $1600 we owed in interest before we could even touch the principle. We also discovered that student loans interests accumulate daily! How can we compete? We felt so defeated.
Temptation also appeared at every corner. When we were laid off, we did not know where our next paycheck was going to come from. Our false sense of self control was produced by fear, not due to good character. As I slashed our spendings and saw a dramatic improvement in our ingoing vs. outgoing ratio, pride set in way too early.
And now, it’s time to face the person in the mirror. The root reason why we are in debt in the first place. The consequences of our negligence. Have you ever been blinded by your own foolishness and when you finally realize it well…you feel like a fool? It hurts.
I have been babysitting for extra money for a bit. Nothing much. I average $60 a month, sometimes less. Dave Ramsey calls it a side hustle. My mother calls it cookie jar money. I once thought they meant the same thing. Oh the things I have yet to learn!
There is gratification in a paycheck. As a stay-at-home mom, my paycheck is in daily kisses and hugs from my littles. Don’t get me wrong, I feel so blessed to stay home with my kiddos. I would want it no other way. But I do have to say…money is quite motivating. I’m just being real honest.
According to Dave’s philosophy, baby step 2 is where you tackle debt from smallest amount to largest with gazelle intensity! That means, stripping everything to essentials only, and attack debt with any extra money you can muster. With 2 years ahead of us, that’s alot of intensity.
I have a confession to make. The day I realized that I couldn’t use my “cookie jar money” for my own pleasures anymore, was a really tough reality. I mean kicking and screaming, full fledged 2 year old in the grocery store temper tantrum. I’m really embarrassed to say I acted like a brat. The insecurity I felt giving up “my money” was gut wrenching to me. Now I have to use real self control. I can no longer act upon my increased heart palpitations as I see something on Amazon I just have to have or else I’ll die!! I get $20 a month. That is it! No more secretly hoarding money for future impulse purchases. My cookie jar money has had a makeover-now it’s a side hustle. Everything I make extra or the Hubs makes extra, goes to debt. No excuses.
You all, this step is no joke. Modifications will only set you back. I really think this step should be called Marathon Step 2 or Boxing Match Round 2 because endurance, discipline and pure stubbornness is needed for completion. There is nothing you can purchase (aside from necessities) that is more important than getting out of debt. Period.
Anyone relate? Am I the only brat that doesn’t want to give up her cookie jar money?