I loved when my SWIHA Life Coach instructor said, “let’s call a thing, a thing”! Living like The Joneses’ is a HUGE thing for millions of Americans! A recent Bankrate survey found that about one-third of people ages 30 to 49 had more credit card debt than savings. That means a lot of Americans are pretending to live like others, when they really don’t have it like that! (the sad part is that The Joneses probably don’t either, lol). I have to admit that when I had those ten credit cards (YIKES!), I wasn’t really trying to live like The Joneses’, however. What other people “THINK” isn’t a disease I’m afflicted with. However, I WAS afflicted with the instant gratification disease! If I saw something I wanted, I immediately charged it! If I didn’t have enough of a credit line available on my Mastercard, not an issue, I could get a department store card with no problem!
As Dave Ramsey says, “Children do what feels good, adults devise a plan a follow it”. OUCH! I didn’t grow up and devise a plan until I was forced into submission by my child’s serious illness. I had no choice but to learn how to say no mainly to myself, but at times to my children as well. Saying no to my “he” (significant other) was harder than saying it to myself because I wanted to make him happy. Unfortunately, all of HIS happiness ended up MY credit card! I didn’t realize that as a problem until it was too late. Thankfully I woke up when I did! I was digging a financial hole that took seven years to dig myself out of. I worked several jobs at once, determined to change course! People would comment that I worked too much, but I always said I was paying the price for the choices I made in the past. Getting rid of debt and securing a financial plan regardless of what the Joneses were doing, became my priority. I wanted out of debt bad enough to make the deep sacrifices it required.
The amount of discipline and hard work it took for me to become debt free is the reason I decided to add financial coaching as a focus area in my Life Coach Business, The Courage To Shift! It was hard to stay motivated with The Joneses constantly whispering sweet nothings in my ear, trying to pull me off course. Something that helped me stay motivated, along with repeating Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University each year in order to be around a support group is remembering what Dave said, “I can’t pay my bills with other people’s opinions.” That made it a lot easier to JUST SAY NO. Finally taking control of my finances gave me a sense of empowerment that I’m excited to share with my clients!