Learning how to be debt free could be one of the best things you ever do for yourself and your family. It may be difficult when you start out, you will have to change the way you think and the way you live your life. Once you get started on your way to being debt free, you will love it.
Debt has a way of dragging you down. It causes stress for you and those around you. You cannot truly be happy and relaxed when you have debt hanging over your head. Getting rid of it is freeing. You will feel less stress and will find that you enjoy life more.
The first step you must take is not easy for many people. Sit down and go over all of your bills. Right down what you owe to everyone. It can be scary but you cannot start without knowing where you stand.
Next you have to commit to only buying what you can afford. No more using credit for anything. If you want something, you will have to save up for it. It is too easy to charge something now and worry about paying later. That is not a good way to live.
Plan a budget and stick to it. You will have to make at least the minimum payments on all of your bills. On the smallest of your bills, you will pay a bit more than the minimum payment whenever you can. You want to get this one paid off as soon as possible. Once you pay that one off put the money you were paying on the smaller bill, and add it to the payment for the bill that now is the smallest. Each time you pay something off, you put the money that you had set aside in the budget for that bill and add it to the next. This will help you pay off your bills faster.
If you do not have enough money to make your minimum payments on all of your bills, you will have to call your creditors. Often they will try to work something out with you, but you have to call. Avoiding them and the situation only makes it worse. Be honest about your situation, listen to solutions they offer and then make the payments that you agree upon.
Learning how to be debt free is learning a new way of life. Once you see your bills being paid off and feeling less stress, you will be happy that you took the steps necessary to learn this new way of living. You will not only be making your life better, but your family will have a better life as well. Children brought up knowing how to be debt free, will have a good foundation to take with them when the go out into the world on their own. Hopefully your good example will keep them from getting into the same financial messes that so many find themselves facing every day.