What Would You Give Up to get Out of Debt?

by Matt B

For sale by ownerI have debt. It is slowly going away, but it is still a nuisance. I frequently daydream about being debt free, and all of the wonderful things I could accomplish without debt.

These dreams are all well and good, but I always come back to a reality in which my debt will not be alleviated without hard work and diligence.

In these daydreams, it is almost always a decent sized windfall of some sort that initially took care of my debt. An unlikely scenario, but it does not hurt to dream. One of my favorite parts of my little mental “getaways” is that my fiscal responsibility always carries over to my dreams. Even when my debt is gone, I am confident that I will continue to make responsible and forward-moving decisions.

Today at work, as I snapped back into the “real world” from my daydreaming, I asked myself, “what would I be willing to give up to get out of debt”? Sure, there are plenty of things I can do to get out of debt more quickly, but if I could make a deal with some unknown force that eliminated all of my debts, what could (or would) I give to pay off all of the things that got me in debt in the first place?

Here’s what I came up with:

Comforts

I live a relatively comfortable life. I like my house (although it is rented), I like my vehicle, I like my routines. What, of these comforts would I give up? Just pick one. I would gladly live in a hollowed out bus or something equally out of my comfort zone for a year or so to eliminate my debt. I would also be wiling to trade in my truck for a much less familiar and comfortable means of transportation. A different shift at work or a totally different routine day to day? You bet. I’m not sure how long I would be willing to sacrifice these comforts in order to be debt-free, but I would definitely entertain the idea and be willing to work out a plan.

Possessions

I’m not much for possessions, but there are some big exceptions. I would have to fight hard to keep my TV, but I may be willing to relinquish it (albeit temporarily) to get out of debt. This may not hold as true during football season. There is absolutely no way I could give up the internet, so that means the computer is out of the question. Almost every smaller possession such as cd’s, dvd’s, small electronics, books and all similar possessions could go in a heartbeat. Some of these items are what helped me build a pile of debt in the first place, so relieving myself of these things may be somewhat theraputic (as it has in the past). Giving them up would be easy, especially with the promise of being debt free. Hey, a guy can dream!

Friends/Family-

Now here’s where I absolutely draw the line. If given the opportunity to be debt free, or have to give up one of life’s relationships, I would have to pass. My daydreams would never exclude someone close to me, therefore, reality would have to be the same way. Even with the choice of eliminating a “not so close” friend, I just would not be able to pull the trigger. Our relationships are very important. Furthermore, you never know when they will blossom into a lifelong bond. I just could not do it.

What Would You Give Up?

What did I miss? What would you do differently than myself? If you would do something different, why? Remember, if you do comment, I will do my best not to scrutinize or chastize the more ridiculous responses.

Photo: Casey Serin

{ 3 trackbacks }

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Zengirl September 29, 2009 at 7:30 am

Most of us want to be debt free, yet live reasonably comfortable life with few comfortable things around us. I am willing to give up my car (out of 2), clothes, dvds, other expensive items and downsize my home, alas it is not easy, as a family democracy, we in household, all should agree first.

Being debt free would be so wonderful. Key thing is not to be in debt again. good luck, I am sure you will be soon.

Sean Breed September 29, 2009 at 5:26 pm

I don’t think I would give up books, but I can live pretty much anywhere. So I suppose I would sacrifice space to get a lower rent, at least for a time…

financia@financialfreakshow.com September 29, 2009 at 7:52 pm

I gave up everything that could easily be replaced when I got out of debt.
A car, various “toys”, my free time, my energy etc. all went to clean up the mess.
Though I never sacrificed when it came to friends or family.

Stuff can be replaced but replationships never really can.

great post!

Jesse October 2, 2009 at 11:33 am

Reminds me of this comic 😉 http://bit.ly/aC3rb

Marie Lewis June 18, 2012 at 11:16 am

Amazing content to ay the least. Firstly I would go for a strict budgeting and low rented house and secondly will reduce using credit cards for buying every single belonging. I would try my level best to get rid off the expensive life style for the sake of savings and would keep on maintaining the same life until i get out of debt completely….! Thanks for sharing this piece of writing with your readers….. 🙂
Marie

Marie Lewis June 18, 2012 at 11:16 am

Amazing content to say the least. Firstly I would go for a strict budgeting and low rented house and secondly will reduce using credit cards for buying every single belonging. I would try my level best to get rid off the expensive life style for the sake of savings and would keep on maintaining the same life until i get out of debt completely….! Thanks for sharing this piece of writing with your readers….. 🙂
Marie

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