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Most people that have debt wish it were gone ASAP.
But a lot of people that have a goal of paying off debt fast will be told they can’t do it, it’s too aggressive, you’ll have no life, it’s not possible __________.
I’m here to tell you-you can do it.
I know it’s possible because I did it.
In 2010 when I graduated from college, the first time, I had $30,000 in debt and was super disappointed with myself for not paying attention to how much I was borrowing.
So I put together a detailed plan, got to work and paid it all off in 10 MONTHS. No that’s not a typo- I was hustling.
That’s where this topic came from.
If it takes you longer than 10 months because your situation is different than mine, don’t sweat it!
Progress forward with intentional action gets results far faster than sitting around complaining that it will take forever.
These 5 tips will help you pay off debt in an accelerated plan. If you prefer to watch rather than read- the video below cover similar content.
TIP 1: KNOW YOUR DEBT NUMBERS
Do you ever watch Shark Tank? You see entrepreneurs wide-eyed and scared shitless go in front of successful angel investors and have their idea ripped apart and (hopefully) receive investment to feed growth.
If you watch this show, you might have picked up on a common reason people lose investments- they don’t know their numbers.
Don’t know your numbers? Then you will be the entrepreneur getting torn apart and life, well, life is the shark.
Luckily, knowing your numbers is easy. Painful. But easy.
Start by getting a better look at your current financial situation.
List out all the debts you have, the balances you currently owe, minimum monthly payments, due dates, and the interest rates.
Do not try to start paying off debt until you do the basic steps listed above.
- Download my Get Out Of Debt Template and get access to my short and sweet free workshop on how to pay off debt
TIP 2: SNOWBALL YOUR DEBT
I LOVE the debt snowball. The debt snowball is basically a really good way to pay down debt quickly.
So let’s talk through the details here.
Start with the smallest balance debt, ignore interest rates. Then once you have that lined up, pay the minimum payment on ALL debts except for the smallest balance debt.
The smallest balance debt will receive any and all extra payments you were planning on making.
This is key. There is power in focus and what gets attention gets results. Once that smallest debt is gone, pretend you still have that previous minimum monthly payment and put the entire debt payment towards the next smallest debt.
Whenever you get any extra money put all of that money towards the smallest debt. Which leads us perfectly into the next big tip…
TIP 3: SIDE HUSTLE
Side hustles are the booooomb! They help you pay off debt so fast and if you choose an appropriate side hustle can really help you expand your skillsets.
When I paid off debt, my side hustle was working nights and weekends as a nail tech. I was an accountant by day and did manicures and pedicures to help me pay off debt. My side hustle was 100% commission but supported me through undergrad, so I continued to live on that allowing me to put my entire accounting income towards my debt.
If you’re trying to find “easy” side hustles, I highly recommend:
- Uber or Uber Eats
- Seasonal retail work
- Contract work
- Flipping cell phones
- Picking up overtime at your current job
It doesn’t matter what you do- as long as you are working towards paying off the debt.
TIP 4: SPRINT
Sprinting is a concept from that came from software development but can be applied to any area of your life.
Start by setting a clear goal and objective of what you need to accomplish. If you are working on a $3,000 credit card, set an ambitious goal of 1-2 months for paying it off. That will more than likely require you to hustle, pick up an extra job, cut some monthly expenses out and sell stuff around the house to reach this goal.
That period of intense focus is a sprint. Now, you can get real nerdy and say “that’s not technically a sprint Whitney,” and you wouldn’t be wrong from the true Sprint methodology, but this is my version of a sprint.
During your sprint, the only focus you have is paying off that $3,000 card. You become fixated on that goal with a healthy level of obsession. That my friend- will get you results.
I’ve tested it in business, finance, and health and it works like a champ!
TIP 5: REDUCE MONTHLY EXPENSES
This is equally as important as side hustling. Most people look at their budget and think, “yep, there’s not any room for improvement.” But frankly, it’s bullshit. I have never seen a budget that doesn’t have some area for improvement. It might be a small monthly saving, but little things add up to big things over the long run.
Hopefully, you are creating and living on a budget. (You are right?) That’s the best place to find areas to cut. Additionally, look through your bank statement with a fine tooth comb and figure out where your money leaks are.
You have some areas you can cut back. I have some areas I can cut back. It’s totally normal.
You do need to temporarily reduce expenses if you are on an accelerated debt payoff plan.
With these tips, you will be well on your way to an accelerated debt pay off plan.