Slavery comes in many different shades. It is defined as: a condition compared to that of a slave in respect of exhausting labor or restricted freedom. Is there any better parallel to relate to the heavy burden of debt? Debt is slavery. It may not be the same type of slavery as most traditionally think of but debt restricts the choices you make in life and can negatively impact everything else in your life. The stress and anxiety debt causes affects relationships, your work life, and everything you do. It has also been known to be a cause of suicide in the United States. How can you solve this problem and pull out of debt? Read on.
How is debt reduction related to prepping?
One might think that debt and prepping are unrelated. Let’s go back and go over the concept of prepping. What is it? It is the act of preparing for a possible catastrophic disaster or emergency. Does this mean it has to be a nuclear disaster or a devastating coastal storm? No, this means preparing for anything: economic collapse, a lost job, serious illness, or any other serious event that can cause shakeup within a family. Having debt collectors breathing down your neck and calling you nonstop is one of these events. This is important to remember as we drum up strides to alleviate this emergency situation. Relief from debt and learn the difference between risk management and risk aversion
Commit to the task now
Debt reduction is prepping for now. Make a conscious decision to get out of debt and craft a plan to realistically reach that goal. This also means commit to stop spending on credit, refrain from making instinctive purchases, and buying new or expensive goods instead of usable secondhand goods. It may not be as “fun” putting more money towards paying off debt than it would be buying a brand new guitar, but this should be expected. Debt is the consequence of paying for goods you don’t currently have the money to afford.
Highest interest debt should be paid off first
The debt with highest interest rate, not the highest debt amount, should be paid off first. If you have $10,000 worth of student loans at 7.0% and a $20,000 auto loan at 3.0%, this situation would dictate that minimum payments made to the auto loan and minimum plus additional payments should be made to student loans. Work on putting additional payments towards one debt account at a time. Once the highest interest debt is paid off, move on to the next highest debt, pay it off, and move on down the line until all debts are paid.
Take up a side job, learn a new skill
Interested in carpentry? Teach yourself how to make bird houses to sell to neighbors or friends on the weekend. How about fixing lawn mowers? Find a YouTube guide and learn how to repair small engines. Point is the more skills you acquire before SHTF the more valuable of an individual you will be after SHTF. Learning how to construct simple structures can be an invaluable talent possibly used in building shelter foundations, tools, or other useful items. You will be a human resource and a valuable member of any unit.
Debt reduction doesn’t have to be a negative unless you make it so. Use this as an opportunity. You shouldn’t be going out to restaurants, movies, or other forms of outside entertainment as often because you’ll need to be saving as much money as possible. As an alternative, spend time playing cards, board games, or telling stories around a fire pit outside. Use debt relief as a jolt of energy for your life. Serious debt reduction can be a major life-changing event for some. Use it as an opportunity. Just because you’re a prepper doesn’t mean you don’t have to deal with current problems. Relieve yourself of debt, reduce your financial footprint, and help reform your future, and whatever comes with it, for the better.
By Melissa Lane