Let’s face it, we all got hoodwinked along the way. We were all told that you are SUPPOSE to have everything you want when you want it.
I bought it, literally, hook line and sinker. Credit cards, multiple car payments, everything on installments. Then I got a wake up call. 2007 the bottom fell out like a size 20 as in size 12 jeans.
I got downsized. It was uncomfortable to say the least. Part of the problem is the word COMFORT. Living in this country we see it every day, everyone is living so dam comfortable, it makes us think to ourselves. “I should be comfortable too.
American is not about family values, baseball and apple pie. It is about comfort and entitlement. Look around and you will see it if you just take the time to look.
Comfort got US(A) into our current situation. and here they are:
- Credit card debit of $5000.00 or more
- Driving cars we cannot afford (Insurance too)
- School loans that rival national debts of small countries
- House payment more than half our income. ( and your house is not valued for what you owe)
- Giving our children too much material and not enough virtue. ( I am guilty)
- Not saving at least 10 percent of what we earn.
These are just a few of the item i took inventory of when I got downsized in 2008. On unemployment ( which was a fraction of my take home pay, but thank you for it.) I realized that I was paying for things, which I could not remember buying, thanks to the ease of acquiring a credit card. I was able to barely hold it together for the 9 months I was “UNEMPLOYED IN MICHIGAN”.
I vowed that when I returned to the stable financial state of being, I would not do this again.
Credit card Companies….ASSHOLES (that was harsh Emmitt) , They are the DEVIL…Temptation . They should be the 8th deadly SIN.
Believe it or not they are almost impossible to live without, unless you know the rules of the game.
During my temporary vacation, several of my credit card companies dropped my limits on my cards to lower than what I owed. Can you believe that! That made my payments on what I owed grow, and my credit rating go down.
I told one credit card during a collection call, I will pay you off when I get the money and never use you again. I heard her smirk. That is exactly what I did. C.R.E.A.M. Cash rules everything around me, is never a better statement of wisdom.
As luck would have it I found employment. I took about three or four months for me to get kinda stable again. I put my plan into action. I told my wife, “I have no money for some time to come for pleasant things. I was on a mission. I did what I had too, every penny I had counted for a bill that had no immediate value. I took about 18 months but I finally paid off my credit card balances.
I bet your wondering how I stayed motivated, Cause it is hard to do. Suze Orman helped but her “GIRLFRIEND” banter made me sick after a while of listening to her podcast. Then I lucked upon Dave Ramsey’s podcast. That was a Blessing. Listening to his podcast everyday for 1 hour helped me stay the course. I began listening to his show, and it helped me to understand VALUE for what I bought.
This Christmas, my wife asked me what I wanted. I told her “Nothing baby, cause I cannot think of one thing you could buy me that would have enough value long term. ” I just wanted to be content with shelter, food, clothes and family.
I realized, I don’t give a dam with the Jone’s think, cause they are not paying for me anyway. My clothes are clean, I have a roof over my head, and if you read my last blog post you know I have had more than enough food.
Here is the MOTTO: Buy what you need and not just what you want. The simple healthy life is the best life.
With the money I am not spending, I am Saving. I have a number in my head to hit by mid-2011, I know I can do that. So by 2015 I will be looking at the world slightly different.