Being in debt can be embarrassing. When, together socially with friends, the topic of money comes up, it can really hit home. As they compare their investments with each other, you know you have to keep your mouth shut. If they knew that you are struggling to pay monthly minimums, let alone have investments, you'd feel like someone wearing their pajamas to a formal ball.
But there IS an almost magical solution
Even more than the financial aspect, the psychological weight of debt unresolved can cripple your professional aspirations, your social status and even your most important relationships. If this article can suggest a brave-but-simple way to free yourself from that psychological burden, I hope you will take action immediately.
Because there are ways to completely change your mindset even before the actual debt is paid off. There are simple things to do that can unleash the power of your self-esteem to make you, once again, a force to be reckoned with.
Dreams don't come true for people who refused to tackle their debt
Debt embarrassment is a psychological predator. The key to success in everything is confidence and hope. We've all heard story after story about the dreamer who just wouldn't give up, and at the end of the day, achieved great things. Nobody takes any risks if they think it is hopeless.
That's why the debt psychology is so lethal. It doesn't just affect money, it stops you from holding your head up high and doing great things. You've got to kill that imprisoning feeling before it kills your dreams.
The easy way: How one debt-solving action creates three life-changing results
The three most important reasons why you must tackle your debt now:
1. The debt burden and embarrassment threaten your relationships and your social status.
2. The serious injury to your self-esteem and confidence prevent you from pursuing dreams and living a fulfilled life.
3. The debt and accompanying low credit score can close many doors to you, including financing and even employment.
By taking action that puts a concrete debt freedom plan into your life, you can immediately solve the first two on the list. And the third problem, the debt/credit score issue, will also start to see dramatic improvement in a short time.
As a theatrical director, I understand a secret that transforms actors, and can transform you
How do the best actors perform magic on the stage? How do they make the audience laugh and cry with them even though they know they are just actors? What's their secret?
It's right there in the job description: they act. As a professional actor reads through their script, they defined what their "action" is in every scene. Are they "attacking?" "Seducing?" "Panicking?" By just putting that action into their minds, they naturally flow into the mood of the scene.
A woman once complained to her acting teacher that she was always ignored by the clerks in the clothing store. The teacher advised her to go back to the store, and to perform the action of "commanding," as if she were Julius Caesar. Before she even said a word to the salespeople, she had three of them following her around the store! The action completely changed her body language!
How just one simple action can transform your financial life
Just as a simple thought in the mind of an actor is transformative, a simple decision leading to a simple action in the life of a debtor is transformative. It is not enough to decide to get out of debt. You probably made that decision many times before. What you need to do is commit to an action.
We are creatures of commitment. One of the greatest fears people have is to be seen as a hypocrite. We don't want to be the sobriety coach who gets arrested for drunk driving. Others silently rejoice when they see someone like that fail so spectacularly. That rejoicing scares us to pieces.
Therefore, the commitment must be made out loud to another human being. And this other human being must be able to keep tabs on you. They must know what's going on all the way through the process.
Two types of people to whom you can make the commitment
You are the one who will get yourself out of debt. The only question is how much help you get from others. Before you act, you have an important decision to make:
Am I going to take care of my debt myself, or hire a professional?
1. An accountability partner. If your financial situation will allow you to solve your debt by increased discipline, great. Even in that case, you should have an accountability partner. Set up a system where you must report on a monthly basis. It can be your banker, your accountant, or a trusted friend. But there must be someone, if your commitment is going to be rock solid.
2. A professional debt solver. If that is not your case, you should absolutely consider a professional debt solver. There are many types, but it is critical that you have one person to talk to who is familiar with your story. This person will not only arrange your debt solution, they will be your accountability partner.
But how does taking these steps immediately change you if you still owe the money?
It is because the psychology is the most powerful part of the problem. At the core of the psychological damage of debt is the feeling of helplessness. It's the fear that, pay what you can each month, the debt is not going away and never will.
But when you take action, everything changes. It can be instantaneous, like it is for an actor on stage. Just spending a half hour reviewing your finances, and then applying for professional debt help or reaching out to an accountability partner, creates momentum.
One of the popular methods of paying off debt is called the "Snowball Method." The person pays the smallest debt first, and then closes that account. Then they go on to the next smallest. Economically, this is not the ideal way. You'd save more money by paying off the larger debt with the larger interest rate.
But "Snowball" works because of the psychology. Taking action, seeing results relatively soon, is totally empowering. It is life-changing.
But you may be embarrassed to reach out to this accountability partner or professional
That is totally understandable, and I said before that it was a brave solution. But think about it. A professional deals with this all the time. They will not be judgmental. And, while reaching out to a friend to be an accountability partner may be harder, that embarrassment will last just for a few seconds.
Not reaching out to anyone because of shame will keep the bad stuff lasting a lot longer.
The use of actions is really magical, and this one most of all
Just read what so many people write about having taken action to get out of debt. They describe the feelings in glowing terms, full of sunshine and hope. For many, just beginning the process of getting out of debt is like beginning a new life.
Use the power of psychology to get rid of debt embarrassment and debt itself
And it is even true the changing your psychology will have a financial result. I once worked with a tour organizer. We had an upcoming trip planned but not enough people in the group. I was concerned, even skeptical. But the boss gave a pound on the table and announced "we will fill this group and have to turn people away."
He started working the phones like mad, and before long, we achieve that goal. I still remember how that determination completely changed him. You need to get that determination, and making that commitment is the action that will do it. Become a different person, and you will get different, amazing results.
So we've seen the power of psychology in determining your financial life
We've seen how making a commitment, a powerful action, can transform your self-esteem and confidence. No longer will you be embarrassed among financially well-off friends. No longer will you be limited in pursuing your dreams. When you see that you can solve this, you will believe you can achieve more and more.
A simple, nonthreatening first step: run the Get-Me-Out-Of-Debt Financial Independence Calculator
From a monetary standpoint, every day that you remain in debt costs you more and more money in interest. From a life standpoint, every day you remain passive in the face of your debt, becomes a day weakened by emotional heaviness.
There is no reason for one to feel financially inadequate among their financially stable friends. There is no reason to wear pajamas at the formal ball and feel the unspoken superiority attitude of everyone else. When you take action and have a concrete plan, the power of hope and the power of your victory over your heavy chains will put a crown on your head.
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