5 Tips To Eliminate Debt Without Working 24/7.
Being a third-year university student with a part-time job, it was necessary to find flexible new ways to create money while getting out of debt, so that I could focus my attention on my design projects without overworking myself. Here are the strategies I used to help me:
1. MAKE A CONSCIOUS DECISION
It’s time to bring the situation to the forefront and make it a top priority on your list of things to do. It’s one thing to be aware of having debt and it’s another to actually take the right actions toward eliminating debt. Once, you’ve gotten that awareness, you can then begin to make the necessary changes to transform the situation for the better. So, become aware of how much you owe, even though this may feel daunting. Once you have an overview of your current position, then you can begin to work on eliminating your debt smart and strategically.
2. CREATE A PLAN
There are many debt-reducing strategies available, but ultimately, your strategy should be tailored based on your unique lifestyle. Here a few resources that helped tremendously with gaining insight and planning:
- Miracle Morning For Millionaires by David Osborn & Hal Elrod
- Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki
- $1000 Project by Canna Campbell
- Think & Grow Rich
- Dave Ramsey Podcast
Planning gives you focus and clarity on what steps need to be taken and the time-frame for your goal to be achieved. It helps break big goals into bite-size chunks, which makes committing to and achieving your goal a lot easier, and also enables you to track your progress.
3. CUT BACK ON EXPENSES
Now, in this kind of situation, you want to be focused on stopping any financial leaks and adjusting your costs to serve your best interest. That way, you can get maximum value from the money already in your life. Here are a few examples:
- Reduce or eliminate takeout and start cooking meals at home.
- Brown-bag your lunch or going home for lunch instead of buying lunch for work.
- Limit shopping visits
- Switch up how you use transportation. Luckily, my job and university were within walking distance. If walking isn’t feasible for you, then maybe public transport, riding a bike or getting a lift.
- Canceling unused direct debits for memberships and subscriptions. If it’s unused, then you’re not gaining value from it, and the money could be put to use elsewhere.
- Having laidback social gatherings at home rather than going to ticketed social events
- Calling up your phone, tv or internet provider and negotiating a better deal.
To be clear: cutting back on expenses, in no way means you must limit yourself. You still want to be able to do and experience things you enjoy, but you do want to implement mindful spending and saving strategies — these are a game changer.
4. INCREASE YOUR INCOME
This is fun! You want to get creative with the ways that you’re able to generate money to pay off debt. There are loads of different ways to do this, and here are a few examples:
- Selling unused items such as clothes, books, etc. on sites like eBay and Depop to someone who would find value from said item.
- Getting a side-hustle to bring in extra income. This could be a part-time job or using skills you already have to help others out on the side.
- Grants are often called “gift aid” because they’re non-repayable funds. While I was at university, they were able to provide grants to help with course material, etc. There are many different grants available to assist different circumstances. i.e. business, health, etc. That could be an option to look into, but, bare in mind, there’s a lengthy application process.
- Invest in the markets. Contrary to popular belief, you should invest while paying off debt. Why? Because you want to be learning new skills and habits while you’re reducing your debt. If you clear your debt without learning new habits then it’s likely you may resort back to old habits… the ones that unfortunately created the situation in the first place. Plus, investing creates passive income. So it’s a win-win.
5. ADOPT NEW HABITS
Last, but not least, adopt new habits. The serious of events that led up this obstacle (debt) all relate to your past habits and experience. An essential part of creating positive money habits is not just understanding what you spend but why you spend the way you do. That way, you can find the root cause of your spending motivation and shift to positive daily habits that support your success and improve your financial situation so you can achieve your ambitious money goals.
Positive money habits could include things like:
- Saving 10% of your paycheck
- Donating to a charity
- Regular checking your account
- Automating your bills,