Declare Your Freedom from Debt

Debt can be daunting and often lead to feelings of helplessness and stress. However, it is important to remember that debt is common for many individuals and there is always hope to move forward and live life on your own terms, completely debt-free.

We want to help you break the cycle and conquer your debts—all of them. By managing your debt one step at a time, seeking professional counseling and planning a path forward,  you will be provided the tools and support to address each debt you face and reap the many benefits that come with achieving true financial freedom.

Consider some of the ways debt limits your independence:

1. Debt leaves you vulnerable.

You risk your future in exchange for money today. If all goes well, maybe you’ll pay off your debts over time and retire securely some day. But if you face a setback—loss of a job, health crisis, etc.—you could be ruined by the debts you carry. It’s a lot easier to face a crisis when you have no debts and money in your savings account.

2. Debt limits your ability to save.

Speaking of savings accounts, being financially independent includes having savings built to the point where you can get through most financial emergencies. If you have 3 months’ income in the bank, you could use those 90 days to look for your next job without facing dire consequences like eviction or losing your car. You’re not financially independent without savings, and every dollar you’re throwing toward debts is money you could be saving.

3. Debt lets you live beyond your means.

One of the perverse realities of credit and debt is that it’s not tied to income the way people think. People of all income levels face financial problems. People who earn large amounts of money can have dismal credit scores, and people with relatively small incomes can have perfect credit. Debt lets you get into a lifestyle that traps you with unnecessary luxuries and financial obligations you would sensibly avoid if you lived on a cash basis.

4. Debt can trap you in a bad job.

You might hate your job. You might have no possibility for future advancement, and no potential to get a raise in the future. What’s stopping you from quitting, and starting in a new field? Debt, most likely. People with too much debt are forced to play it safe and stay in a bad situation to keep their income steady, when people with no debt are freer to take risks, try new things, and explore multiple career opportunities.

5. Debt affects your marriage.

You could be in a bad marriage, but be afraid to leave because you can’t afford to go it alone. If you’re trapped by debts, you could be throwing away every chance at happiness for financial reasons. And if your marriage is a good one, debt can make it worse. All of the ways you are limited by your debts are affecting your spouse as well. Maybe he or she wants to change careers, but can’t because of household finances. Debt has trapped you both.

6. Debt steals your time.

Besides the financial burden, dealing with debt drags you down personally. Worrying and planning for every monthly payment, shifting balances and tracking expenses… these things deplete your time and energy. These burdens can take a physical and emotional toll on you. You’re never really free and ready to live your life on your own terms if you owe money and don’t have a solid play for paying it off.

We want to help you break this cycle and conquer your debts—all of them. Only by paying off every debt can you get to true financial freedom and reap the many benefits that come with it:

1. Financial freedom sets you up for success.

We offer some free educational materials like the Basics of Financial Planning, but we understand that most of the work we do is on the financial failure side of the ledger. We help people avoid or recovery from debt problems, dig themselves out of a hole, or repair their finances. Our goal is to get everyone to the point where they can start thinking about financial success. Investing, growing savings, building wealth—these are things that debt gets in the way of.

2. Financial freedom gives you the ability to dream.

You can’t follow your passions if you’re stuck paying off a mountain of debt. You may want to start a band, become a sculptor, or audition to act in a play. These things don’t pay off financially most of the time—you need to start with financial freedom so you can engage in what you’re passionate about.

3. Financial freedom improves your family.

If you’ve got to work every overtime shift you can get to make ends meet, you’re not going to be there for your kids’ soccer games or band concerts. You won’t have as many date nights with your spouse. Digging your way out of debt and achieving financial independence gives you time to focus on what really matters.

4. Financial freedom lets you retire when you’re ready.

Without dedicated saving starting early in your working life, you can’t be sure you’ll be ready to retire when the time comes. If you don’t want to be trapped in the same job well into your golden years, work toward financial freedom now so you can take some well-earned rest in retirement.

5. Financial freedom lets you help others.

You might have causes that matter to you, and lack of financial independence is likely the main thing keeping you from working on them as much as you’d like. Whatever kind of service you want to offer to those in need, you’ll be able to do more if you can achieve financial freedom.

6. Financial freedom lets you work toward peace & happiness.

You can’t buy love or happiness, but by eliminating the financial burdens that weigh you down, you’ll be able to focus on building a well-rounded life. Traveling, enjoying life, just plain having fun—this is the benefit of financial freedom. There’s a kind of peace and serenity that you can pursue only once you’ve mastered your personal finances.

Call us any time to get started on the journey to financial freedom. Get free budgeting and debt advice, create a plan to conquer your debts and declare your financial independence today!

Melinda Opperman

About The Author

Melinda Opperman is an exceptional educator who lives and breathes the creation and implementation of innovate ways to motivate and educate community members and students about financial literacy. Melinda joined credit.org in 2003 and has over 19 years experience in the industry.