Adventures In Becoming Debt-Free: 16 Months In

in life •  last year 

17 months ago, my husband and I were freely spending from our checking account, swiping our credit cards at will and without thought and had no idea how much debt we actually had. What we knew was that we worked hard and we spent our hard-earned money on "stuff" that granted us a few moments or days of happiness.

16 months ago, my husband and I started talking about our future and throwing around some ideas about some pretty drastic life changes that might afford us more time to travel and more experiences rather than just collecting more stuff. On 9/1/2016, we sat down at our kitchen table, cracked open a beer and got ready to confront our debt. 6 years together of freely spending with absolutely no idea how much we actually owed overall.

$73,676.99.

We owed $73,676.99. We could buy an entire house with the amount of debt we had. We could buy a luxury SUV for the amount of debt we had! We looked around and struggled to identify what "stuff" we actually bought. And there was no way we could even come close to making a list of "stuff" that we bought that would total $73,676.99. In those really harsh, really scary, really confusing moments, everything changed for us. We committed to focusing on paying off our debt and making it a priority to not incur any additional debt. And we started right away.

It's been 16 months since we confronted our debt and, as we looked at our progress over the past 16 months, we were amazed. We thought we would struggle with not making frivolous purchases. Or that cutting our sushi intake down to just once a week might actually cause us to starve. But, 16 months later, we're still alive, not starving and really happy! We've got one debt left to pay off until we're DEBT FREE, we're 11 months ahead of our original plan for paying off our debt and we're convinced we've never made a better decision in our lives!

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If you're interested in seeing the changes we've made to help us save money, ways that we've paid $56,363.08 toward our debt in the past 16 months or what "drastic life changes" we've got planned, please visit our blog Small Living, Big Life.

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