On May 1, my dear husband tweeted this in response to another tweeter:
Sacrifice now in ways people won’t, to live a life later, that people can’t. We have, but paid 30k debt in 3.5 yrs. #debtfree
— Gaitan PT (@GaitanPT) May 2, 2013
I’m not going to lie, I was a little “upset” that he posted the actual amount of debt we had. I was all for saying, “yay! We’re out of debt!” But didn’t think we really needed to share HOW MUCH. But, then I thought about it some more…especially after having a few friends make comments about it…saying things like, “you want advice on getting out of debt? Ask Jen and Bret!” I realized, we do have valuable information on the topic.
Here are some of the ways we did this:
- Trusting in God. I know it sounds like a “warm and fuzzy” thing, but it is THE ultimate reason why we are now out of debt.
- “Entrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won’t, so that you can spend the rest of your life like most people can’t.” – Anonymous i.e. Making big sacrifices.
- We didn’t buy birthday, Christmas, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, etc. gifts. This was SUPER awkward at first!
- We didn’t buy new clothes, unless it was absolutely necessary. I went about 5 years in between jeans. The line was when EVERY pair of jeans had a hole.
- We moved back in with my parents.
- We didn’t go out to eat as much as we would have liked. One of the hardest things is having to say no again and again….AND AGAIN to hanging out with friends.
- Eating generic food.
- Cancelling gym memberships.
- Downgrading our insurance.
- Checking books out of the library instead of buying them.
- Selling things we didn’t use.
- Saying no, even when it’s painful. i.e. Not visiting Bret’s family for Christmas last year. This was such a big deal because it’s the only time of the year we can see them.
- Extra money went towards paying down the debt, no questions asked.
It’s painful, it’s sacrifice, but it can be done!
I thought this was an appropriate post today, because we actually had a shopping spree! It was probably the first time we went out, bought things we needed and didn’t say things like “oh, man, we can’t afford that.” A bonus for this shopping trip is that we can write off pretty much all of it! The clothes we bought can and will be worn at weddings/personal training sessions/networking/etc.
The highlight of my purchases? Oh these sparkly heels of course! I’m all about the sparkly!
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I’m so proud of you guys! We have been debt free (minus the house) since 2006. There have been a lot of sacrifices along the way and we drive some really old cars but it’s worth it. This year we have finally been able to do things that we couldn’t have done if we hadn’t made those sacrifices. I have to admit at times I wanted to just do things like everyone else so the glimpse of “being able” is just what I needed to keep my butt in gear. Congrats guys, you have worked hard, sacrificed a lot, and I’m so happy for you!
Thank you thank you!!!
There have been many times we’ve wanted to do things “like everyone else” but it’s SOOOOO worth it in the long run! Good luck!!!
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