It seems that for years now we have set financial goals that we were certain we were going to follow through on, and then, well… life happened. Last year it seemed that every financial obstacle that could get in our way, did, and we are certain that this year will be different.
At least, that’s the idea.
Just like the majority of Americans, we have credit card debt. Don’t fall over of shock now! Our main focus is that we will pay off credit card bills this year.. all of them! This must happen so that we can follow through with moving into a larger home, and ensuring that we have plenty of savings, because guess what? In just ten short years our oldest will head off to college (OMG, reality check)!
So how exactly are we going to pay off credit card debt and free ourselves from financial ruin?
Assess The Damage – First, we had to get a running total of exactly what we need to pay. After assessing the damage we were able to put a plan together that would allow us to pay off debt in the time frame we were happy with.
Shred – The next step was to shred the cards. Now, not everyone agrees with our aggressive manner of shredding, and some may choose to just put them away and have much more self control then we do…that’s ok too. We did keep one card that is for emergencies only, and the rest went bye bye.
No Cash, No Purchase – We are on a cash only basis now. We have a weekly budget and it’s up to us to decide what we do with that budget and how to spend it wisely. Although we may want to go to the movies, eat out, and visit a local festival, our budget may not allow us to enjoy them all, and we have to pick and choose appropriately.
Second Guesses Can Be A Good Thing – There’s many times each week where we allow ourselves to “cheat” and pick up take-out, order a pizza, or take the family out for a fancy dinner. However, now that we have a financial goal, we have to second guess each and every “cheat” night, because that money could go into the “jar of debt”, taking us one step further to our goal.
Do I think we will be flawless? NO! It would be impossible to expect perfection, but the important thing is that we have taken the steps to move in a better direction and free ourselves from financial ruin – that we are proud of.
Have you set financial goals for 2012? Do you have any tips you’d like to share? Please leave a comment below and tell us how you plan on making better financial decision in 2012!