A Life Without Debt: Finding Satisfaction in Being Fiscally Responsible

I frequently hear people bemoan the choices they have made when it comes time to “man up” and be financially responsible. They grieve over the vacation they have to cancel due to a layoff. They cry over the kitchen renovation that has to be put off when the roof needs replacing. They sob when they have to put off buying the 70-inch TV because the car died and they have to replace it. The thing is, this moaning and gnashing of teeth usually does not begin until all avenues of credit have been exhausted. In other words, people put off acting responsibly until the last minute. They take trips on credit cards. They finance the roof repair and the kitchen renovation in one home equity


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5 Responses to A Life Without Debt: Finding Satisfaction in Being Fiscally Responsible

  1. Cristi Smith says:

    That is a great way to look at things and perhaps if more did there would be less debt period. The problem begins I think is that when people have these problems crop up they still take the trip as well as pay for the unexpected. Even if it means creating more debt. I am sure their reasoning is that they will pay extra to pay off the unexpected debt but somehow that doesn’t always happen and thus the cycle continues.

  2. Emily Booth says:

    I recently had huge bills for car repair and the vet. Huge. And this happened right before I bought a new home and all of the costs associated with that. I had the satisfaction of paying cash from having $$ saved for emergencies. The emergency fund is low so I am cancelling trips for later this year and making other adjustments. I have peace of mind and the satisfaction of knowing I can handle what life brings me. This means more to me than anything.

  3. thriftorama says:

    I think the worst part about being debt free is staying patient. there is so much I want to do with my house but I have to spread it out over years and years to stay out of debt and healthy financially. Sometimes, I just want it all done!

  4. Jay Gatsby says:

    thriftorama – why is being patient “the worst part” about being debt free? If being patient is difficult, then it sounds like you haven’t fully committed to the frugal/debt free lifestyle. You appear to still consider some “wants” to be “needs” – at least in regards to your house – and have been probably thinking of creative ways to justify the expense to have “it all done.”

    You clearly know what you have to do to stay out of debt and be financially healthy. Your mission now is turn that knowledge into a belief so that you won’t need to exercise patience. The idea of racking up debt and/or engaging in financially unhealthy behaviors should be abhorrent to you.

  5. Crystal says:

    I wanted to poll some people on this. I have been working in the biotech industry for 3 years, and will be leaving soon to pursue a Phd in microbiology.

    Would I be better off cashing in my 401ks from industry to pay off my student loans from undergrad, or save the 401ks and slowly pay down the student loans? I have been using all my non-bill money to get rid of my car loan, and have no credit card balances.

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