Get Out of Debt For Your Health
Last Updated: May 13, 2015
We have all probably read stories about how too much stress (or being unhappy) has negative health effects - emotionally and physically. Continual anxiety and discontent can lead to mental exhaustion, depression, a weakened immune system, and other physical illnesses that can even contribute to premature death.
We also know that unhealthy stresses can be dramatically increased by poor sleeping habits, lack of proper nutrition and inadequate exercise. But do we ever think that our money habits may be contributing to a higher tension level - maybe even as much so as some of these other factors?
The biggest nerve in the human body is the one to the wallet.
I've heard this many times, and you can take its meaning several ways. But no matter how you interpret it, the fact is that we get emotional about money. Usually that emotion comes out as an unhealthy worry. Unless our money situation is ideal, we're going to tend to be bothered about it, at least a little. The sad truth is, especially these days, too many people are in tough financial shape and it is adding a mountain of pressure to our lives. And this has a definite health consequence, not to mention its effects on our marriages, jobs and everyday life.
So what do we do about this? It's tough if you lose your job and find yourself upside down on your home (owing more than it is worth). And it's also difficult to keep ending up with too much month left at the end of the money, even when you're working hard. Here's the thing. The tougher financial spot you're in, the more radical you're going to have to get to escape the pressure cooker. From our experience, most people don't want to get radical though.
Most people prefer to stay with familiar problems, rather than find solutions that may create brief havoc in their life (even though their money problem is causing much more havoc). This is nuts. If your feet outgrew your shoes, then you'd replace the shoes, even if the new pair felt stiff and uncomfortable for a bit. So why continue to struggle month-after-month in other areas of your life? Maybe it's time to consider:
Practical Tips on How to Become Debt Free
- Renting for a while longer, instead of buying a house
- Selling the house and renting instead
- Moving to a less expensive area
- Selling the house and buying a smaller house
- Selling a car that has a loan balance, paying off the upside portion and buying an older vehicle with cash
- Selling the big rig and getting a smaller one
- Selling the boat
- Selling the camper
- Buying used stuff instead of buying it new
- Renting stuff instead of buying it (campers, boats, tools)
- Selling anything you don't use or need
- Selling anything that has a payment and getting rid of the payment
- Selling everything and starting over!!!
Would you be willing to do ANY of the above things if that's what it took? You can always buy things later when you are no longer struggling. Yes, it can be very hard to let go of stuff. Still once you start doing it, it becomes very liberating because you start to feel the fog lifting.
At the height of our money troubles, we sold the house and most everything else. We also sold a newer car at a loss, even though it cost us several thousand dollars to pay off the auto loan. Ouch! We bought a cheap, older car for cash and lived in a small basement apartment. Doing these things put us in a position to get away from the financial difficulties much faster and took a lot of the pressure off. If we had insisted on keeping all of the stuff, the stress level would have remained high, it would have cost us even more in the end and taken us longer to escape from the torment.
So go for it. Get radical. Get mad. Get out of debt as fast as you can. You'll find a lot of peace at the end of the road. And you'll be amazed at how much less stress you have in your life. It feels so good, and it's good for you! How many things can you say that about!
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