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How To Eliminate Debt By Eliminating Your Debt Mindset

Apr 17, 2008
I went to a baseball game last week, and as I stood in line to buy tickets, I noticed that a majority of people in line were buying their tickets using a credit card. Now this was a college baseball game, only $6 for an adult ticket. Not exactly a night on the town that needs to be financed.

My thoughts turned to the mindset of our society. It is now commonplace for many people to charge everything they buy. Even the fast food chains accept credit cards. There are many factors that have contributed to this mindset. The first glaring factor is advertising. The credit card companies bombard us with messages showing us the great life we can have by using their cards. Picture great meals in a fancy restaurant, wearing expensive clothes, while on exotic vacations. Nothing is ever mentioned that we actually have to pay for that lifestyle. Just use your card.

Another factor is the ease on getting a credit card. Even in today's credit crunch, obtaining a credit card is still very easy for most people. Once we have the card in hand, using that card is even easier. We now have self-service lines at the grocery and department stores. We can fill-up our car and pay at the pump. Some stores have even installed technology that allows us to simply pass our cards over a scanner, and off we go with our purchases.

When we use those plastic cards for everyday purchases, we usually will purchase more than we should. It's just too easy get the dessert we don't really need, or add on the matching handbag to that new pair of shoes.

Constantly use our cards for practically everything makes it too easy to lose track of how much we are really spending. We are then hit by a credit card statement we cannot afford to pay. But the message our minds receive is "That's ok, I'll just pay the small amount required for now, and pay the rest off later." This is a mindset for disaster. The "later" is when next month's statement arrives, and another month's worth of everyday expenses are added on, plus the remainder from last month, plus interest from last month's remaining balances. The minimum payment my now be a bit more, but still manageable. We'll catch up next month.

It is a cycle that will not end until you change your habits. Your habit will not change until you change your thinking about how and when you use your cards. This spring season, as the weather warms up, flowers begin to bloom, and the leaves return to the trees, you can make a vow to end this vicious cycle, or realize that you could drown in your growing pool of debt.

Changing our mindset will not be easy. For many people, being in debt has just been a part of life. Not too long ago, we felt it was all right to be in debt. In times of a national economic struggle, even our government encourages us to go spend money. The heck with our personal economy, we have to help the country. But thanks to plastic cards, we spend money we don't actually have.

Our minds told us that we could just refinance the house again, and pay off the bills. This was the message set to us in endless advertising by mortgage companies when rates were low and credit was easy. This was a way of "starting over". Of course, our 30-year mortgage started over also. As we are all well aware, this option doesn't exist anymore for many of us.

Well what if we could get a "do-over" on our financial lives? This spring, change your mindset about your credit card use. Do you really need a credit card to buy lunch, those new shoes, that morning coffee, or your weekly groceries? If you do, then you are spending too much. If you don't want to have that much cash in your wallet for your daily expenses, then perhaps you're every day expenses are too high. If you can't afford to pay for it now, then don't buy it now. It's that simple.

When you resolve to use cash, the extra trips to the ATM will be a wake-up call. They will be a reminder of just how much money you are spending. You will realize that it is real money. Your money! You will realize that you need to cut your spending down. For most of us, our minds do not equate the plastic card with spending your money. This is the same reason casino's use plastic chips at their gambling tables.

When you use cash instead of plastic, you will get a sense of the money you are spending (or wasting). You will not be putting yourself deeper into debt, you will not spend as much, and you will not be throwing your money away on interest payments that do nothing but fill the wallets of the bank executives.

For those of you are already too deep into debt, open your mind to the possibility that a program may exist that will allow you to eliminate debt without bankruptcy, consolidation, or refinancing. You can truly get a fresh start in your financial lives. You will need to learn to be credit card free, or at least just keep one or two cards for true emergencies.

Jim Vrana of The True Debt Advisor states, "You can begin again with a new financial life." He adds, "When the debt burden becomes too much, you must find a debt elimination program that you can understand and are comfortable with. Call it a financial "do-over", without bankruptcy."
About the Author
Billed as The True Debt Advisor (http://www.TrueDebtAdvisor.com), Jim Vrana's mission is to empower people to overcome their financial challenges. The procedures used to eliminate credit card debt have had tremendous success. Contact: Jim Vrana, (800) 637-1785, http://www.TrueDebtAdvisor.com
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