Is it time to pay off your credit card debt? Credit card debt is an problem that plagues many good, hard-working Americans and shouldn’t feel ashamed if you are one them. Millions of us have fallen into credit card debt at one time or another and the important thing is to make the changes that we need to make to get out of credit card debt and not look down on ourselves or blame ourselves for getting into credit card debt. Yes, changes have to be made and we should reflect on how we ended up in credit card debt, so we can make those changes, but we should avoid negativity or shame when confronting our credit card debt. Taking responsibility for our past behavior and our undisciplined behavior is one thing, but putting ourselves down or shaming ourselves is another. Let’s start today with a new attitude towards our finances and make better choices going forward.
First of all, not everyone in serious credit card debt is a big spender, quite the opposite. Most people in credit card debt are there due to an emergency, unfortunate event, layoff, downsizing, or something out of their control due to family circumstances, work circumstances, or other life events. Be good to yourself and know that millions of Americans have faced what you’re facing now.
There are a lot of ways to pay off credit card debt, consolidate credit card debt, or discharge credit card debt if it comes to that, but hopefully it won’t. It will take a change in spending habits to pay off credit card debts that old fashioned way, so make sure to create a tight budget and stick to it. Think of it this way, when your credit card debt is paid off, you will be a more disciplined, responsible, restrained, and purpose-driven person. You may even end up in better physical shape, as you may end up spending a bit less on restaurants, food, and alcohol (if you drink). This doesn’t mean that you have to live like a nun or never splurge or enjoy yourself, but you will need to stick to a budget and make a few cutbacks.
Credit card debt is a serious issue and you will be better off after paying off your credit card debt and the restraint, perseverance, and discipline that you develop during this process will demonstrate that you have grit and can commit to a plan. After you pay off your credit card debt, you will want to make sure that you don’t revert to your old spending habits or you will just rack up credit card debt again. Hopefully, you will become one of our many users who have credit cards, but pay them off immediately in order to get free travel miles, perks, and other rewards, OR you’ll become a personal that avoids using credit cards all together!
Here’s a few tips to paying off credit cards:
- Stop worrying or even caring about what other people think of you: Many people get in credit card debt because they’re trying to “Keep up with the Jones'”, but you need to stop caring what others think and focus on your budget, personal goals, health goals, financial goals, etc.
- Stop overspending. If you don’t need it, don’t buy it. They call shopping “retail therapy”, but are you just trying to feed the “hungry ghost”? Buying things will give you a momentary rush that goes away super fast, the same way the joy from intercourse or drugs may give some people. Find another outlet besides shopping.
- Set a budget and stick to it. You can still have fun and do fun things, but keep them within your budget.
- Focus on your family, friends, relationships, and things that give you joy. This is what’s important in life, not material items.
- Pay all credit card bills on time and pay a little extra each month is you can.
- Look into credit card consolidation loans, such as personal loans and other debt consolidation methods.
- Stay within 70% of your credit card limit or better.
- Don’t have more than two credit cards, unless you already do and you’re paying them off.
- Make sure any credit card balance transfers make sense before you do them. Often, there are fees and/or increased interest when you transfer balances, so make sure you do your research and make sure it’s a good move, financially.
- *Talk to licensed professionals. Depending on your situation, you may need help from an attorney or accountant. Some credit card debt problems are more severe than others. Just remember that there’s always a solution and there are licensed professionals that are there to help people through these times. Many people have found a new life after discharge or bankruptcy, or after credit counseling, debt consolidation, down-sizing, or other tactics that can be used to get rid of credit card debt.
- * Don’t let credit card companies or debt collectors bully or intimidate you! This is illegal and they know it…debt collectors have been sued for millions for trying to intimidate people and many use shady practices. Talk to a licensed attorney if you feel you’re being intimidated or treated unfairly.
- Again, it’s just money. We realize that money problems are serious, but our mental and physical health are more important and so are our friends, family, and loved ones, and our sanity. Many people have a great life after a bankruptcy, discharge, consolidation, or pay off. Never let credit card debt get you down, you will get through this. Remember that celebrities who have made millions of dollars end up having debt problems, so have some billionaire families, businesses, entrepreneurs, professional athletes, politicians, moguls, etc. *People from all races, religions, professions, income-levels, etc, have overcome debt issues and you can too! You’re not alone, reach out to a professional if your debt problem becomes serious. If you’re dealing with anxiety or depression due to your debt, you will want to speak with your doctor or a licensed therapist/licensed professional who can access your mental health and make the appropriate recommendations.*
- If you’re considering taking out a debt consolidation loan or personal loan, you can compare personal loans using the personal loan comparison page.