Kelly Blodgett launched Money Gal Coaching with a goal of serving people who, like her, were burdened by debt. You can get her tips for paying down debt on a regular basis at Bring Me The News, in addition to the Money Gal Coaching website and Facebook page. Here latest story:
I am a big believer in having as little debt as possible, but probably not for the reason you are thinking. There are actual physical, emotional and financial reasons for you to get rid of your debt.
When I was on my journey to getting rid of my student loans I was stressed constantly. And the ironic part was that I couldn’t afford the occasional massage, because I had no money, and I couldn’t relax by curling up on the couch because I was working all the time.
Symptoms of financial stress are real, and these are a few of the big ones:
The first real reason to get rid of your debt is that you are carrying less risk (hello, 2020). My 2020 was unexpected. I dropped from 40 hours a week to 20 basically overnight at my day job because of the pandemic, and that was way more stressful than my previous student loan stress.
But since my loans were paid off, I just had to reevaluate my budget and watch my spending. Even though I didn’t have extra money, I wasn’t wasting what little money I did have on debt payments. My situation could've been a lot harder had I now gone on my debt-free journey prior to the global health crisis.
A better credit score is another reason. Sure, debt is a factor for a good credit score but it’s not that simple. You can have too much debt which can end up costing thousands of dollars in interest that might've otherwise gone to that next house, car or boat you’ve been eyeing. And debt is actually a very small percentage of this score. You don’t have to carry debt to have a good rating.
The only debt I have is a mortgage and I pay my credit card in full every month and my rating is still excellent, it can be done!
Better cognitive function is next up. Studies show that experiencing poverty can impair attention span, working memory, and self-control. Have I ever mentioned that I once bought a pressure cooker on an infomercial before Instapot was even a thing?
Yeah, I couldn’t afford it and who knows why I thought I needed one. Now I have the pleasure of a kitchen appliance that weighs a ton that I use once a month when I decide to make rice.
Fortunately, studies also show that paying off debt reverses cognitive issues caused by financial stress.
Less chronic pain is another real benefit to getting rid of debt. People with high levels of stress caused from debt are more likely to experience migraines, back pain and general muscle tension. They are also more likely to buy over-the-counter painkillers.
Money Crashers lists 13 reasons other you should want to get rid of debt.
The general consensus is that debt is bad, we all know that. If you can related to the physical, emotional and financial stresses listed above, you should seriously consider taking the next step to begin paying down debt.
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