Tag Archives: Financial Freedom

Managing Your Money Rule #4: How To Develop A Giving Plan

Welcome back to our Managing Your Money series. Today is on Rule #4: Develop a Giving Plan.

“One life to give; one life to live.” That’s the life-motto of pastor I heard speak years ago who was imprisoned in the middle east and tortured for his faith. Just this morning I read where Jesus said “Any of you who does not give up everything he has cannot be my disciple.”

Those are hard words to hear, especially in the land of materialism. Yet I believe true financial freedom isn’t endless wealth, but rather, freedom from the control of money and posessions. It’s more about your heart than your bank account.

Giving is powerful regardless of your faith. but since my relationship with God is at the core of who I am, it just makes sense for me to start this post with His words on giving.

Proverbs 11:25: “A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.”

Proverbs 28:27: “Those who give to the poor will lack nothing…”

Malachi 3:10: “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.”

Luke 6:38: “Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”

2 Corinthians 9:7: Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

How To Put Giving Into Practice

Here’s how Beth & I budget for giving.

1. Make giving a line item at the top of your budget. Allocate money for giving before anything else.

2. Start with giving 10% of your gross income. I know when you’re in debt that the last thing you have is “extra” money. But you have to have faith! There is a spiritual principle at work here. Read Luke 6:38 again: “with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” If you wait to start giving until you have enough, you will never have enough. If you seriously can’t give 10%, at least start somewhere. Maybe it’s just 1% and you commit to grow this by a percentage point each month.

3.  Once you are out of debt, increase your percentage each month and see where it goes!

Giving Destroys Materialism

One life to live; one life to give. Jesus said to “store up for yourselves treasures in heaven…for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

God isn’t against wealth or nice things. But we have to be very careful because “stuff” can quickly grow roots into our hearts. Every time you give something away, it is declaring that you trust God to be your provider and your source of joy and comfort, not your stuff.

Giving is very powerful. There’s a reason it’s a “rule” when it comes to managing your money. Either you will learn to manage money by giving it away, or you will learn that your money is managing you. There are no other alternatives.

Committed to your success,

-Wesley 

Comments: People have more questions about giving, as well as incredible testimonies, than most other topics. Please share!

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How To Develop A Savings Plan in 3 Easy Steps

Welcome back! We’re continuing our series about the “7 Rules of Managing Your Money.” Today’s post is on rule number two:

Rule #2: Develop a Savings Plan.

Solomon, one of the wealthiest and wisest men to ever live, said “The wise man saves for the future, but the foolish man spends whatever he gets.” (Proverbs 21:20)

For much of my life I have been the foolish man in this verse. I used to think my spiritual gift was spending money. But learning the wisdom of a saving plan has turned this discipline into a delight. If you desire financial freedom, you must develop a savings plan.

Saving is simple, so developing a savings plan should be simple too. We’ve broken down the process into three easy steps.

       Step 1: Make a List of Your Short and Long Term Savings Goals
       Step 2: Determine the Amount & Frequency of Your Savings
       Step 3: Organize Your Budget & Your Bank and Implement

Step One: Make a List of Your Short & Long Term Savings Goals

Short Term Goals: This is for all non-monthly expenses for which you need to be saving, such as car insurance, maintenance items, gifts (birthdays/Christmas), travel, and even an emergency fund.

Let’s say you pay $600 a year in car insurance. If you don’t plan for this by saving $50 a month, this instantly becomes an emergency when it’s time to renew (where’d we hide the credit cards?).

The same is true for maintenance items in your home such as the air conditioning and appliances. Everything in your home has an expected lifetime, so if your refrigerator cost $1200 and has an expected lifetime of ten years, then every month you need to be saving $10 for a new refrigerator. 

For a budget to work it has to be SIMPLE; we would never recommend a separate line item in your budget for every appliance. Instead, have one line item for Home Maintenance and one line item for Vehicle Maintenance and save $50 a month towards each.

Long Term Goals: This is for big ticket items, such as a new house, car, college, and retirement. 

Saving for a car or home is pretty straightforward. Determine the cost of the item you want, set a “purchase date,” and do the math to determine how much you need to save each month to reach that goal. So if I want a $25,000 car five years from now, then I need to start saving $416 each month to reach that goal.

Retirement is a little more complicated. A simple rule of thumb is to save 10% – 15% of your income towards retirement. However, there are dozens of variables, such as your age, your income, what type of account to save the money in, etc. We recommend meeting with a certified financial planner to determine the best strategy for your specific situation.

Take Action (30-60 minutes):

It’s time to take action. Sit down with your spouse and work through the following two action points: 

  • Review your budget and make sure you have specific line items for your short term goals, such as home maintenance and car insurance.
  • Make a list of all of your long term goals, complete with purchase price and date, and the monthly savings required to meet those goals.

Stay tuned for steps two and three. Sign up for our weekly newsletter with links to all of our posts!

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

Comments: How have you created unneeded emergencies for yourself by not saving for short term goals?  What long term goal are you currently saving up for?

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Top 5 Unexpected Benefits Of A Budget

Ever see your bank account dwindle away and wonder where it all went? 

You have to understand this principle about money:

If you don’t tell your money where to go it will get lost.

Welcome back to our Managing Your Money series. This post is on Rule #2: Create A Spending Plan.

Rule #2: Create A Spending Plan

What is a spending plan? Very simply, it’s a budget. It’s telling your money where to go before it wanders off and you can’t find it anymore. And according to Dave Ramsey a budget is the number one tool for getting out of debt.

We’ve done numerous posts on How to Create a Budget. So instead of the “how-to” I want to give you five reasons WHY YOU MUST have a budget every month.

Top 5 Unexpected Blessings Of Having A Budget

1. A Budget Gives You Control.

Drowning in debt feels like you’re out of control doesn’t it? A budget puts you back in the driver’s seat. You start to feel like you can wrap your hand around your finances. It gives you confidence. Even if your budget is a mess, simply having one tells you and your money whos boss.

2. A Budget Brings Unity.

Ever have that “WHAT WERE YOU THINKING?!” experience when you find out your spouse spends money on something completely ridiculous? Creating a budget with your spouse eliminates that once and for all. It forces you to agree on what you will spend your money on every month.

3. A Budget Eliminates Conflict

Statistically, couples who argue more about money are more likely to separate. Why argue constantly when you can schedule one hour each month to get all of your financial arguments out of the way? (Shhh…Beth & I actually enjoy doing our budget together!)

4. A Budget Reduces Emergencies

For an event to be considered an emergency it has to be unexpected. But what most people call “financial emergencies” are actually normal events for which they failed to plan. The car needs new tires, the A/C went out, we have to buy Christmas presents, etc. A budget forces you to “expect the unexpected” and helps you be prepared for them when they inevitably happen.

5. A Budget Saves You Money.

Last but not least, a budget can save you ridiculous amounts of money. But there’s a reason almost 200 million Americans DON’T have a budget. It’s hard…it takes time…blah, blah, blah.

If I offered you $200 to sit down and create a budget in an hour or less you would take it. But what you must realize is a budget will SAVE you at least $200 a month, and every month you follow your budget that number goes up.

What You Manage Grows

Let me be candid for a moment. You know you need a spending plan. The people who don’t aren’t reading this right now. So why don’t you have one? What are your excuses? Time? Fear? Not enough money to manage?

T. Harv Eker says “You must acquire the habits and skills of managing a small amount of money before you can have a large amount. Managing your money is more important than the amount.”

Your excuses will kill your potential. Don’t let them. Take action now.

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

P.S. Do you have a budget? How has it helped you? If you don’t have a budget, what’s stopping you?

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Managing Your Money Series: Rule #1 – Take a Financial Snapshot

I struggled with how to title this post.

Originally, I wanted to call it “Rule #1: Turn on the Lights.” We tend to keep our problems in the dark, because we’re too afraid to expose them and confront them. Yet Jesus said, “The truth will set you free.”

In every area of our lives, not just financially, there is incredible power to being fully open and honest. Indeed it is the path to freedom.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step right? Well…kind-of. It begins first with understanding exactly where you are so that when you take that first step it’s in the right direction. That’s what Rule #1 is all about…turning the lights on to your financial situation and getting a clear picture, maybe for the first time, of exactly where you are financially. Let’s get started.

What You’ll Need

1. Time: This will probably take two hours, so grab some coffee and settle in.

2. Spreadsheet or Notebook: Going through this process for the first time will require gathering a lot of information. We recommend creating a spreadsheet where you can keep all of this information in one place. Keep a record of the following information: your financial websites (ie, banks, loans, bills, etc), account numbers, log-in information, due dates, interest rates, etc.

3. All Pertinent Financial Records. This is where you should go online and access all of your accounts, including checking, savings, investments, credit cards, school loans, mortgages, and any other assets or debts. As you do this, bookmark the sites, and record them on the spreadsheet listed above so that you’re only doing this task once.

4. Courage: You may not like what you’re going to see, but don’t be discouraged. Just work the plan and let the plan work. If you get overwhelmed, remember that it’s only numbers.

5 Steps to Getting a Clear Financial Picture

Step 1: Make a List of all Debts.

If you owe money to someone else, whether it is “good debt” or not, write it down. Include the amount of the debt, the interest rate, the minimum payment, and the date each month that the payment is due.

Step 2: Create a List of all Assets.

Make a list showing the value of everything you own, including the following: Liquid Assets (cash, bank accounts, money owed to you, bonds, etc), Investments (mutual funds, stocks, real estate, business interests, etc), Long Term Assets (retirement savings, pension plans, etc), and Personal Assets (personal residence, vehicles, household furnishings, collectibles, etc).

Step 3: Determine your Net Worth.

Your net worth is simply the amount leftover once you total up your assets and subtract all of your liabilities. Financially speaking, net worth is the true measure of wealth. CNN has a very simple tool to calculate your net worth. Once you have completed the exercise, I recommend reading this book excerpt by T. Harv Eker.

If you have a lot of debt and little savings, your net worth may actually be negative. That’s ok, the fact that you are now paying attention to your finances means that you will quickly see a change in this. So just work the plan and let the plan work.

Step 4: Determine your Monthly Income.

What is the combined total of all income each month, including salary, wages, bonuses, tips, etc?

Step 5: Determine Your Monthly Expenses.

If you’re not tracking your expenses, then you will probably be shocked at where your money is going each month. I recommend going to your bank’s website and downloading all transactions for the last three months into Excel. You can easily create a column where you can write in next to each transaction what it was for, such as gas, entertainment, groceries, restaurants, etc.

You can sort the spreadsheet and total up each category to get a clear picture of your average monthly expenses. If you’re not familiar with Excel, there are excellent examples of how to use it at YouTube, such as this one which explains how to sort data. Or, just keep it simple and do it manually.

Step 6: Create a personal profit and loss statement.

This is common in the business world, but we fail to adapt it to our personal finances. Basically, a P&L statement for your personal finances would look like this: “My total monthly income of $___  less my total monthly expenses of  $___  =  $___.

The final number is the amount leftover after all of your expenses have been paid. This is a key number as you want to do everything possible to get this number higher every month, either by increasing your income, decreasing your expenses, or both. What you do with this money will greatly determine whether or not you ever become wealthy.

How are you doing so far? If you’ve completed all 6 steps above I’m very proud of you! So many people want wealth, but they’d rather go buy a lottery ticket than actually do the work to create true wealth. You’re putting in the time and labor needed to learn how to manage your money, and trust me, the rewards of your labor will be well worth it! Stay tuned as our next post is Step 2: Create a Spending Plan!

I’m going to be creating a spreadsheet soon to help walk people through the 6 steps. If you would like a copy of this, please send us an email.

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

Comments? Did you get stuck on any of the steps? What was your favorite part?

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The Secret Source of Serious Satisfaction

“Now what?” This is one of the saddest phrases you can say. People spend their lives in search of a dream, only to see it fulfilled and say, “Now what?”

I felt that after we paid off our debt. Oh I’ll admit, it was an awesome feeling to push the “pay now” button for the last time on Beth’s $40,000 school loan (which was our lowest interest rate and hence the last thing we paid off…forget the debt snowball…tackle your highest interest rate first).

“Now what” happens so fast. It seemed like the excitement of paying off our debt faded so quickly, and in just a day or two we were on to the next goal. It’s like the mountain climber who, once he ascends the peak of a mountain realizes there are so many more mountains to climb. “Great…nice view…now what?”

I think of this every time I watch a championship game…the winners stand there so proud…a life dream accomplished for so many of them. But then comes Monday morning. Then comes next season. “We won the Superbowl…now what?” The fulfillment from reaching a goal fades so quickly, that you have to have a source of contentment in your life that is deeper than an accomplished goal.

In Psalm 73, the writer Asaph begins by confessing how he was envying the wealthy, for they had “no struggles” and were “free from common burdens.” But then he has a revelation and ends the chapter by saying “Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. God is…my portion forever (vs. 25-26).”

While debt may be difficult, envy is a killer (and maybe part of the reason you’re in debt…keeping up with the Jones’ is a fancy phrase for envy). The secret to true satisfaction in life is to understand and believe that God is your source. This can’t just be head knowledge…you have to anchor your emotions in the fact that God himself is enough. God + your debt = enough. God + your marriage = enough. God + your poverty = enough. God + nothing else = enough.

Beware of destination disease. Think you’ll be happy once you’re out of debt? You won’t be…not unless you’re already happy now. Financial freedom is nice, but honestly it doesn’t feel a whole lot different than being in debt (hate to bust your bubble). At the end of the day we have to go deeper and be able to say as Asaph did that there is nothing on this earth that will ultimately satisfy me outside of God himself. God is my portion. God is enough.

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

We respond to 100% of our comments! What are some false sources of satisfaction that you see people turning to? How do you struggle with destination disease?

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Why Debt is Not Your Problem

Can you explain in just one word why you are in debt? A few words that come to mind are college, unemployment, emergencies, desires, and marriage.

For me, that one word would be “easy.”

It was easy to get a car on payments. It was easy to put our honeymoon on credit. It was easy to finance new bedroom furniture. Most people are in debt for this reason – it’s easy. Is there anything you can’t finance these days?

Debt is not your Problem, and Money is not your Solution

I’m currently about 30 pounds over what I would consider my ideal weight. However, I would be deceived if I believed that I had a problem with my weight. My true problem is that there’s a breakdown of control between my fork and my mouth.

Napoleon Hill said “If you do not conquer self, you will be conquered by self.” If you dig deeper into any area of your life that feels out of control, you will always discover a lack of discipline in that area. Lack of discipline always precedes chaos.

Financial discipline is a prerequisite for financial freedom. Getting into debt was incredibly easy for us – shockingly easy – and it took a tremendous amount of discipline and focus to get free. There will be times when you want to quit, when it feels not only difficult but impossible. How you respond in those times will determine your success.

Getting out of debt is like a boxing match. It’s okay to take a short break between rounds, but the second you throw in the towel it’s over. God is in your corner, and we’re in the stands cheering you on. Just keep fighting and you will get your victory.

Comments?

We’d love to hear your “one word reason” for getting into debt! We respond to 100% of our comments!

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

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Are You Worthy Of Financial Freedom?

Your financial future depends on how you answer this question.

I had the opportunity yesterday morning to attend a Dream Builder’s breakfast here in Orlando. The subject of grace came up, and a very intuitive woman at my table made the comment that people who don’t allow themselves to receive or experience grace often do so because they don’t feel worthy of receiving grace.

Grace isn’t a word that comes up much when talking about finances. We throw out words like discipline, diligence, desires, delayed gratification, etc., but not so much “grace.” Why is it that grace is THE word to use when talking about sin, overcoming addictions, loving difficult people, enduring trials, but not when it comes to our finances?

Too often, we have this mentality that says “I dug myself into this hole and I’m going to dig myself out.” We may even throw the phrase “by God’s grace” in there somewhere, yet it still carries the tone of “I screwed up and created this mess. It’s my job now to fix this.”

What’s the point?

If in the core of who you are you see yourself as a failure, as someone who can never measure up, as someone unworthy of success, then debt can actually become your excuse for never stepping out and at least trying to fulfill your potential. It’s a lot safer to be in debt and be “trapped” in a routine job that you need to make your minimum payments every month than it is to be free. This may not make sense at first, but in some way’s it’s risky to be debt-free. Like the photo above, the lion is safer in the cage than in the wild. But lions weren’t meant to be caged, and neither are you!!!

“Am I worthy of financial freedom?” It’s the same question as “am I worthy of love?” or “am I worthy of success?” It speaks of how you see yourself. It’s a funny question because (let’s be honest) in many ways the answer is “no.” Yet if you can’t answer this question with a resounding “YES!” you’re always going to struggle financially. The only way to confidently answer this question is when you realize this truth:

You’re not the one answering the question.

If I create a beautiful painting, the painting itself doesn’t have the right to determine if it is worthy to be displayed at the Louvre or  sold at a garage sale. It would be ridiculous to ask the painting if it is worthy or not. It’s a stupid question. You would ask the artist. Only the creator has the right to determine the worth of His creation. And this is why it’s called “good news.”

Despite our failures, our sinfulness, our inadequacies, and yes even our financial blunders, our creator looks at us and shouts “Worthy!!! Worthy of my love! Worthy of my blessing! Worthy of my Son.” Romans 8:32: “He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all–how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?”

“Am I worthy of financial freedom?” is the wrong question. What we need to be asking is “Do I freely receive His grace in all areas of my life?” As you journey from debt to life always remember He is on your side.

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

We respond to 100% of our comments. Let’s dialogue: Do you believe that God is on your side in paying off debt? Have you considered the need for grace when it comes to your finances?

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Mythbusters: Busting the Top Five Budget Myths That Keep You Broke (Part One)

I always get nervous talking about budgeting. I bet it’s similar to how pastors feel when talking about tithing. It’s a powerful thing that can set people free, yet people have this natural inclination against it. So, between today’s post and Friday’s post, we’re going to address the top five myths to budgeting. Another title could be, “The Top Five Excuses People Use To Avoid Budgeting.” Whatever you want to call it, not having a budget is one of the top reasons people overspend and hence end up broke. Let’s dive in.

Myth #1: I Don’t Need A Budget

Truth: You’re absolutely right. You don’t need a budget.

At least, not like you need food, water, and a host of other things. If you’re content with living with the stress of not really knowing where your money goes, not really feeling prepared for the future, and arguing with your spouse about money, then no, you don’t need a budget. If you’re reading this, it’s obvious that you’re not content with those things, in fact, you’re sick of the stress, and you’re tired of fighting over the finances.

Bottom Line: If you’re fine with the status quo (broke, in debt, & stressed), then no, you do not need a budget. However, if you want to achieve financial freedom, then you absolutely need a budget.

Myth #2: Budgeting is Hard

Truth: The first 2-3 months are hard. After that it’s basically auto-pilot.

Creating a budget for the first time can be a little intimidating and may take a couple of hours. Like all things, there is a learning curve. But after you’ve created it, it’s just a matter of revising and adjusting your budget each month to make sure you’re on track.

Because we get paid twice a month, Beth & I spend about 15 minutes every two weeks looking at our budget. I can truly say it’s easy for us, and it didn’t take long at all for it to be a very normal and natural part of our marriage. Most of the time it’s a fun process that brings a sense of security each month as we know we’re getting all of our financial bases covered.

You don’t have to be a math whiz or some Excel expert either.  We’re going to go through the process of creating a budget in the next couple of weeks, but for now, just know that all you need to create a good budget is a calculator, and copies of any pertinent financial statements/obligations.

Myth #3: A Budget Won’t Work For Me

Truth: A budget will benefit any income level or financial situation you may find yourself in.

I fell into this trap not long after college while working at a high school in Texas. I was making the equivalent of a teacher’s aide salary (not much) and it often seemed like there was more month than money. I remember thinking, “Why make a budget? All it’s going to tell me is that I don’t have enough money.”

What I didn’t realize at the time was the power of a budget. Sure, it may have revealed that I didn’t have a whole lot of money…but it also would have shown me how much I was over-spending on food and other areas where I could be saving money. It also would have done away with the fear of never really knowing where I was financially, or if I was going to get slapped with overdraft fees at the end of the month. But because I was intimidated by a budget, and didn’t want to face the facts, I hurt myself financially.

Comments: We respond to every comment! How have you bought into these first three budgeting myths?

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

 

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What Is The Opposite of Debt? (Hint: It’s not Wealth)

Now that you know our story (see our first two posts, Part 1 & Part 2), we want to share with you why Debt To Life exists, and specifically, who we had in mind when we created it.

Beth & I came to the realization that as long as we have debt, we are a slave to that debt (see Proverbs 22:7). While your lender can’t totally rule your life (at least not in our society), they do have some power over you as long as you owe them money.

The financial gurus like to talk about good debt versus bad debt, but when your a slave, it’s all bad. People often play this financial game with debt…”My money’s earning more in interest in a money market than I’m losing in interest on my loan, so I’m just going to keep the loan.”

While that may make some sense financially, when you realize you’re a slave, you no longer care about winning the game; all you want is out of the game. The bottom line for a slave isn’t winning, it’s freedom.

If your heart burns for freedom, you’re in the right place.

There’s a reason we named it “Debt To Life.” We could have easily named it “Debt To Wealth”, or “Debt to Not So Much Debt So You Can Have More Stuff.” But we didn’t, we named it Debt To Life. There’s a million websites and resources out there to help you build wealth if that’s your desire. We’re not against building wealth, however, if your primary goal in life is the accumulation of wealth or stuff, this is not the place for you.

Too many people trade happiness for wealth, thinking that their wealth will bring them happiness. At Debt To Life, we believe that fulfillment is found in living out one’s purpose, regardless of the income level associated with that purpose.

For Beth & I, a significant part of our purpose is found in helping people, both in our own backyard and around the world. When we were buried in debt, we literally felt trapped in our jobs, like we were years away from really living out our purpose on a more “full time” basis. Like the lion in the photo above, we felt caged, spending our energy fulfilling someone else’s dreams but not our own. In some twisted way, the cage represents security and familiarity, but it comes with a price…your purpose.

If your heart burns for purpose, you’re in the right place.

One of our goals in writing this post is to help define and connect with you, our target audience. We did a lot of research, and had some snazzy information to impress you with how much we know about the statistical metrics that define who we think you are. But at the end of the day, what defines the community we are aiming for isn’t so much a specific set of demographics, but rather an attitude of the heart.

Only you really know if you are hungry or not to take the steps necessary to get free of your debt. Only you really know if you’re tired of serving someone else’s purpose and are ready to discover your own.

Maybe you’re reading this and you’re not so sure about all this talk of freedom and purpose, you just know you’re tired of getting screwed by your credit card company. Wherever you find yourself, if this resonates with you, we encourage you to stay connected, and let us walk with you on your journey towards financial freedom.

If you haven’t already done so, sign up for our newsletter, and get our free special report about the “1st Step to Financial Freedom that No One Talks About.”

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

P.S. For us, the opposite of Debt is Freedom. What are your thoughts? We respond to 100% of our comments!

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Our Journey of Financial Freedom – Part 2

Hold Onto The “Somehow”

(Continued from Part One)

Despite our circumstances, somehow we still had vision (you may say it was tunnel vision, because all we were focused on was the light at the end of the tunnel). We knew God’s promise that “those who seek the Lord lack no good thing” (Psalm 34). My wife and I would seek the Lord together, and we knew that somehow we were going to find a way out of the hole we had dug ourselves into.

In an act mixed with faith and a little desperation, I called up one of the managers whom I had worked for as an adjuster, just to see if there was any work, anywhere. To my surprise we were given an opportunity….but there was a catch. This “opportunity” involved relocating to another state.

The decision was easy. It was either, “move and work,” or, “stay and drown.” We moved. With only a few hundred dollars (thanks to a gift from our friends!), we packed up and hit the road. Just like in Houston, we actually went further into debt the first two months as it took a while for the paychecks to start coming in. But we had been given a great opportunity, and  Beth and I worked our tails off, harder than we’ve ever worked in our lives.

“We’re Debt Free!”

After 18 months of 60-70 hour work weeks, we finished paying off our debt. At its highest, we over $119,000 in consumer debt. This included $44,638 on five credit cards, $30,243 on a home equity loan, $37,242 in school loans, and $7,000 on a car loan.There were many times we wanted to quit and move back home, but in our hearts we had a vision of what our life could be without debt, and we reminded each other daily of that vision.

Our journey isn’t simply one of working hard and paying off debt. We had to let go of the mindsets that kept us in debt. We had to sever the spending habits that kept us broke. We had to learn to have financial margin in our lives.

It’s now March, 2011, and in just a few months, we’re having our first child. I’m thankful that Beth and I were able to close the chapter of debt in our lives before writing our chapter on family.

Our goal in writing this is to inspire you to go for it. To help you see that that debt is imprisoning your purpose, but that freedom is possible. Your purpose is worth it. Your marriage is worth it. Your future is worth it. If we can do it with six figures of debt surely you can as well.

If you haven’t signed up for our newsletter, do so now. You’ll also receive our special report detailing the first step you need to take to get out of debt that no one talks about. Stay connected with us and let us walk (or run!) beside you in your journey of financial freedom.

Committed to your success,

-Wesley

PS: We’d love to hear from you! Please add a comment below. How is your story similar to ours?

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