[Editor's Note: This is a guest post from Jason Cabler, DDS who has guest posted on the blog before. He is a Christian personal finance blogger, author, and speaker, whose blog, Celebrating Financial Freedom, focuses mostly on getting out of debt and living the debt-free lifestyle. Most young doctors, of course, have a significant amount of debt. He recently developed an online video course called Celebrating Financial Freedom to help people get out of debt, which is discussed near the end of this post. Jason has donated a copy of this course as a giveaway for this post. Email me with the words “Celebrating Financial Freedom” in the title if you would like to win it and I will pick the winner randomly from the emails received. [Update 2/6/14: Winner has been selected so don't email me trying to enter.] If you didn't win, you can purchase the course from this link for $87. Be aware that if you purchase the course through links on this page, I get a commission on the sale (same price to you.)]
Getting out of debt can feel like a huge barrier to overcome, even when you’re a professional with a high income. When you decide to commit your time and energy to getting out of debt, it’s very easy to be intimidated by this large goal you’ve set. So how do you overcome that feeling of being overwhelmed when you want to get out of debt, but you’re put off by the time and work it will take to get it done? You have to step back, take a chill pill, and realize that it’s the small victories that lead to big wins.
Pay Off Smallest Debts First
When you apply the philosophy of winning small victories to chipping away at a huge mountain of debt, it simply means paying off your smallest debts first. I realize that some financial experts say that you should pay off the debt with the highest interest rate first. That’s OK, if you want to do it that way it’ll work just fine.
What the Research Shows
However, research shows that tackling your debt by paying off the smallest debts first actually works better. Why is that? Because starting the get out of debt process by winning small victories is much better from a psychological standpoint. Those little wins motivate you to keep moving when the going gets tough. They help you feel good about what you’re doing and motivate you to continue moving forward in a way that other get out of debt methods don’t. How do you start winning those small debt victories that eventually win the war? You make a plan.
The Debt Rocket
Some people call this method of paying off debt a “Debt Snowball” or any number of other names. I call it a “Debt Rocket” because it starts off slowly, but quickly launches you into the blue sky of debt freedom!
How it works:
- List each of your debts from the smallest debt to the largest
- Continue paying the minimum payment on each debt every month.
- Any extra money you have to use for debt should be put toward the smallest debt to get it paid off much faster
You can download free Debt Rocket forms here to start your own plan
Let the Momentum Build
Those simple steps allow you to get your smallest debt paid off very quickly, letting you get a small victory that greatly increases your motivation to continue the get out of debt process.
- Once you get the smallest debt paid off, take the money you were previously sending toward the smallest debt, and add that to the payment for the next smallest, along with any extra you may have.
- This allows you to get the next smallest debt paid off in no time, because you’re sending in much more than just the minimum payment.
- Continue doing the same thing, building momentum and working your way down the list as you get each debt paid until you become debt free!
I call it the “Debt Rocket”, but as you can see, it’s not rocket science. It’s a very simple, but very powerful concept.
Learn More About Getting Out of Debt
I know you’re a busy professional, but when you take a little time to put together a Debt Rocket plan and stick to it, the small victories will start adding up to life changing debt freedom over time, guaranteed!
You can learn all the steps to getting out of debt in this series of posts I wrote about it. However, you can learn even more about getting out of debt that will change your financial life permanently through my brand new Celebrating Financial Freedom online video course.
What The Course Covers
- How You Are Manipulated to Get Into Debt, and how it affects your freedom, your happiness, and your future.
- The Spiritual Aspects of Money– How your money mentality affects every aspect of your life, and how it can add to, or take away from your spiritual walk.
- Getting Out of Debt– The 5 step process that will lead you to debt freedom and keep you there.
- How to Get On The Same Page With Your Spouse About Money- Finally eliminate disagreements about money. You will learn how to work together and understand how your spouse thinks about money.
- How Handling Your Money The Right Way Changes Not Just Your Family, But The World as a Whole- Sometimes in very surprising ways.
Warning!: The course is based on Christian principles, so it may not be for everyone. But if you think it might be for you and your goal is to finally take control of your finances and get out of debt forever, then click over and learn more about the course. I think you’ll like what you see. If you have any questions about the course, feel free to shoot me an email and I’ll be glad to answer any questions you may have.
Have you ever started the process of getting out of debt but didn’t follow through? What held you back? If you are out of debt, at what age did you become debt free and how did you do it? Comment Below!