This is going to sound weird or stupid, but isn’t *going into* debt so much fun???! Like, don’t we enjoy spending money on stuff we love – even if it’s only in the moment?
As finance nerds we tend to focus on how terrible debt is and how much we hate it etc etc, but I think we forget just exciting it can be to buy stuff too 🙂
I mean, why else would people willingly go into debt if they weren’t getting something awesome in return? Do you know anyone who goes out of their way to buy stuff they HATE?
Of course not. That would be ridiculous.
But that’s how we’ve been groomed to think now! That all debt is stupid and we didn’t get anything good out of it!
I was reminded of this when I was chatting with The Debt Free Guys recently and they asked what the most credit card debt people ever had was… Theirs was $51,000 (!!) and I responded that my max was probably around the $2,000 range. They said how they wish they had been “more like me” growing up, and I remarked that they probably had a $hit ton more fun than I did! Lol…
And I guarantee that is at least 95% true. Especially at the $50,000 mark!!
Do you know how much fun trouble you can get into with $50k???! All the while I was watching my pennies and scraping by as a poor college student every day?!
That’s not to say I didn’t have any fun in those days, or that I wish I could have switched places with them – I wouldn’t – but just that, again, we tend to only think of the *bad* stuff relating to debt and none of the perks we once got from it.
Even my smaller $2,000 debt included tons of great stuff like beers on the town, meals out, road trips and even part of a brand new iBook I got straight out of college! Had I had to pay with cash at the time I wouldn’t have been able to enjoy such sweet luxuries. And that wouldn’t have made life enjoyable, especially at that time in life when you’re just starting out in the working world without a penny to your name…
So while debt is “bad” and most of us hate getting into it, the fact still remains that at one point we did very much enjoy indulging in it or else we wouldn’t have done it in the first place. Emergencies and special circumstances aside, of course. We’re dumb as humans, but not that dumb!
I’m not sure why I chose to argue this point today, haha, but maybe it’ll help any of you feeling down on yourself as if Past You was a big idiot and you wish you could have done things differently 🙂
Maybe you would have knowing what you know now, but be glad you woke up when you did and try not to be so harsh with yourself. You had a good reason back then to take on the debt, even if you don’t agree with it now!
And how cool that we even have the *option* to go after things we want without needing the money for it?! Sure it gets us into trouble more often than not, but that’s on *US* for misusing it, not the tool itself. Similar to money it’s the user that determines whether good or bad is done with it, which also means WE HAVE ALL THE POWER in the relationship! And that’s pretty bad ass, right?!
So get empowered again and acknowledge the debt for what it is, but also remember that at one time you were a great match for each other and thank it for serving its purpose
You’re smarter now and will eventually say goodbye forever, but for now you’re still in a committed relationship so do your best to co-exist until it’s finally wiped away… Like your exes, you sure had some great times together!
Yours in debt-freedom-but-not-fun-freedom,
PS: I know that all debt isn’t “fun” debt and sometimes you have to pay the bills and there are emergencies and yada yada yada – that’s not the debt I’m talking about here. I’m talking about all the kinds that gave you “stuff” or experiences in return for slapping ’em on the card… It’s not like we got nothing in return for it!
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