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Is your vision to be debt free in the coming year? If so, are you willing to make the required changes to see new results?  If you find joy in complaining, whining, and worrying – stop already. Those emotions will not change your situation. In order for your financial situation to change, you have to change. Change involves making a decision to transform your mindset, habits, and spending to get out of debt. The economy and all the uncertainty has made everyone re-evaluate and come up with new priorities. Assets and possessions so many have worked so hard for are quickly disappearing—daily. Yes, now is certainly the time to focus on new and relevant priorities that will sustain you financially both short and long-term. Below are useful tips that can help you get out of debt in the coming year.

What do you owe?
List your debts in order starting with the biggest balance first. Next to the creditor's name, list the balance owed, minimum monthly payment, and the interest rate you‘re paying on that card.  Get organized, it will help you see your financial situation with clarity.

Have a payment plan.
Pay off small balances first by applying extra money; continue to pay the minimums on the cards with larger balances. When you’ve paid off the smaller balances, attack the larger ones, and don’t charge another dime.  

Stop using credit cards.
When you pay off a credit card, call the company to close the account, and then cut up the card.  Most advisors will tell you not to close the account. I say different. Why have an open "monkey" on your back? Get rid of it, clear your mind, and get rid of the temptation for good.

Create a spending plan.
Live on a budget. Track your incoming and outgoing money, track receipts, and eliminate wasteful spending. Track your spending using software like Excel, Microsoft Money and Quicken. Or better yet do it by hand with a ledger.

Stop using home equity.
Americans use home equity like credit cards. Using home equity loans, as you can see, can be dangerous. Usually, the money is used to buy “wants” or pay down credit, which then is charged up again. Avoid equity loans. You do not want to put your house, family, and possessions in jeopardy.  

Get needed help.
Out of control spending is like an addiction, and it takes time to kick the habit. However, people find themselves in debt for many different reasons: health, divorce, and job lost.  If debt is causing you to have mental, physical, and emotional problems, get help. Call a counselor, coach, or a professional advisor.  

Bottom line: all the counsel, guidance, education, books, and audios in the world won't help you if you don’t commit to dealing with and eliminating your debt.

Sharman Lawson a columnist on Fabulously40, and a financial coach, speaker, and author of the book 12 Steps to Eliminate Debt Forever! Visit her website: [Link Removed]

Sharmanl, Your links have been removed, please consider upgrading to premium membership.


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