Today on the show, we did a segment called "What's Good". We asked people to call in and give us one good thing happening in their lives.
The 'good thing' I shared with everyone was that for the first time in my adult life, I am DEBT FREE!!!
I have FINALLY paid off a total of $46,000 of debt! I know, it's hard to believe. But, it's true. My husband and I had accumulated that much debt! And we don't even own a house!
Credit cards, student loans, medical bills and car loans made up that amount.
To be honest, I hadn't even really been all that worried about it. I make good money and so does my husband, so I just paid my minimum payments each month and continued spending away the rest...That's been my life so far...Making good money and having NOTHING to show for it at the end of each year.
One day, I heard a radio program while flipping through the iHeartRadio channels called the Dave Ramsey Channel. He's a financial guru who has a very unorthodox approach to what we as Americans have ingrained in us...USE EVERY PENNY YOU HAVE and pay off EVERY DEBT YOU HAVE...including your car!
And you'll do this by budgeting your money using CASH in envelopes! When the cash runs out, you STOP buying things in that category...what a concept!? Here are the envelopes I've been using...I keep them in my wallet and I cut up ALL my credit cards:
The whole thing is honestly too crazy to believe just by listening to little old me. I HIGHLY encourage you to check this guy out. He has saved my life in so many ways! And NO NO NO NO I am NOT being paid by this guy or his company. I am just a believer because it worked for me and it has brought me so much peace.
I want you to have the chance to be free too.
Mike and I no longer fight about money. Norah has a college fund. I started a savings account. I no longer put things on credit. We no longer have car payments. We are free in every way. And we are committed to staying that way!
In a nutshell, Dave Ramsey wants to see you complete what he calls '7 baby steps'...in this order:
His theory is 'if you have debt (other than a house), then you should STOP putting any money into any investments or savings accounts until your debt is paid off'.
Some people think this is crazy and stupid and 'but what about the company matching funds' and 'car payments are normal' and 'student loans have low interest rates so who cares'...You can make a million excuses if you want to...trust me.
But, bottom line is, I've tried everything else. And it's NEVER worked for me.
His whole thing is that he wants you to take 'Financial Peace University'...It's a 9-week course given once a week. You can find an upcoming class at a church near you here:
I listened to the 9 lessons from FPU on CDs in my car...best decision I ever made.
If you register online I'm pretty sure you get the CDs and workbook and 'tuition' for the class for the whole family for like $100...
I spent $100 and paid off $46,000 off debt with my investment. I also have $20,000 in savings and it keeps growing every month now that I manage my spending finally! ;) Best $100 I ever spent!
It's a game changer, a life changer and you'll probably email me after you've listened to the first CD or gone to the first class and tell me how your thinking has changed too!
God Bless and I'll warn you now...Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University is 'biblically based' so you will hear religion weaved into it quite a bit. If that's a problem for you then you probably won't enjoy the lessons very much.
(Photo Credits: Laura Diaz)