4 Mistakes People Make Trying To Get Out Of Debt*

*This is a collaborative post*

Debt is an incredibly easy thing to get into and a tricky thing to get out of. It takes so much more than paying off your credit cards to live debt-free. You need to completely change your spending habits, figure out how much you owe, stick to a budget, and save up for emergencies. The choice to get yourself out of debt can truly change your life, but only if you’re willing to put this work in. Everyone makes mistakes throughout this process, but, you should try to avoid them when you can. With that in mind, here are four common blunders you should be aware of;

Not Figuring Out A Plan
You can’t start paying off your debts until you have a plan. Of course, you can try, but it wouldn’t get you very far. Without a plan, you have no goals, no guidance, and nothing to motivate you when times get tough. Because of this, you have to go through all of your bills and write a list of every single debt you have, including their interest rates and minimum payments. Then, you need to figure out which of these debts are most important and should be tackled first. Those that are top priority don’t necessarily need to be the largest, but it would make sense.

Sticking To The Same Habits
Humans are creatures of habit. We watch the same films, eat the same meals, shop at the same stores, and drive the same cars. Living life this way is predictable, which makes it comfortable, but, if your spending habits are what got you into debt, then things need to change. Take a look at the things you do each day and identify times you spend money unnecessarily. For example, you might grab a coffee on the way to work or eat at a cafe every lunch time. If you want to save money and avoid debt, then you should take coffee and lunch from home.

Getting Into Even More Debt
To get yourself out of debt, you need to stop getting yourself into it. Because of this, it’s important that you put aside money each month to build an emergency fund. This way, if something went wrong, and you had a large bill to pay, you’d be able to cover it without borrowing. Of course, until you manage to build your fund, you might still need to borrow, in which case, you should compare credit products and ensure you get the best deal possible. Just make sure that you only borrow when you have absolutely no other option.

Photo via Pxhere

Trying To Do It Alone
For one reason or another, most people try to hide how much they’re struggling financially, even from their family and friends. Rather than asking for help, they try to do it alone and often find this to be a challenge. If you want to make some big changes in your life, then you need to put embarrassment and shame aside and speak to someone about your problems. If you don’t feel comfortable talking to your family, or they can’t help you, then there are a number of debt advice services you could speak to. They can offer free advice and support, so ensure you use it.

Getting out of debt can be a struggle, but, if you’re determined, motivated, and avoid the mistakes above, you should start seeing a difference in no time at all.

*Contributed by Sam Jones. *Header photo via Pxhere

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