We're forever being told to live within our means, but when our means don't cover the essentials, that can be pretty hard to do. Debt can build up at an alarming rate, and once you're in the cycle, it can feel like you'll never be able to get out. Plus, when you're busy trying to pay back what you owe, other necessary aspects often suffer. Luckily, while it's certainly not easy, it is possible to claw your way back into the light.
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Consolidate and eliminate
The first thing you're going to want to do is reduce your debt. While this is easier said than done, getting rid of small debts, and refinancing larger ones onto more favorable terms can make a big difference to your bottom line each pay cycle. Start researching fast loans with favorable repayment terms. These allow you to roll nasty credit card repayments into a more easily managed payment plan, then funnel what you're saving on interest into paying off your smaller debts.
It may seem counterproductive to start with the debt that is probably incurring the least interest and fees, but because these expenses can be paid off quicker, you'll be able to transfer what you were spending on them across to your larger costs and chip away at them faster too, thus turning your debt cycle on its head and getting it to work for you rather than against you.
Map out your plan
It's far easier to achieve a goal if you can visualize what steps you'll need to take along the way and what success will look like. Decide what you want from life and where you want to be in twelve months time, then make a list of everything you'll need to do to get there. This may feel like wishful thinking, but when you're struggling, you can check back to see how far you've come and remind yourself what to do to keep moving forward.
Get a side hustle
A lot of people will tell you to get a better’paying position, or even pick up a second job. While these suggestions can work for some people, in many situations, they just aren't possible. What you can do, however, is get yourself a side hustle. This involves choosing something you enjoy and finding a way to monetize it. By finding extra income in this manner, you don't have to feel like you're constantly working just to scrape by. Indeed, you may even find that, in time, your side hustle can take the place of your original job, leaving you time to focus on bettering other parts of your life.
Watch what you spend
We're not just talking about being frugal here. To find genuine ways to improve your finances, rather than applying band-aid fixes you'll never stick to anyway (let's be honest, cutting caffeine out isn't an option for most people these days), you need to keep track of what you're spending.
When you´re just starting out on the road to recovery, your best bet is to cut out everything that isn't essential. Once you've got your grounding and are starting to properly build your future security, however, there's no harm in indulging a little here and there, as long as it's within your budget and doesn't throw you off course.
Having money trouble is never fun for anyone, but rest assured you don't have to stay in your current situation. Follow these tips, find what works for you, and build the life you deserve.