Money Gal Coaching: My why, and how a budget changed my life

Kelly started Money Gal Coaching after paying down more than $46,000 in debt in just 20 months.
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Kelly Blodgett (right) with her partner, Derek (middle) and their dog (left, obviously).  

Kelly Blodgett (right) with her partner, Derek (middle) and their dog (left, obviously).  

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 is her latest story:

After I finished college, I did what a lot of broke 20-somethings do. I moved to the city, got a full-time job making very little money and made up for my inflated lifestyle with a waitressing gig five nights a week.

I had around $60,000 in student loan debt, a number so big that I couldn’t even comprehend it as a 22-year-old. Combine that scary number with a society that tells you “student loan debt is good debt” and “debt is a part of life," and I had accepted my fate.

Instead of more efficiently managing my finances, I worked to enjoy life and put my debt on auto payments. For around eight years it was out of sight and out of mind. I tell you this because I think a lot of us feel that way, especially when we're convinced we don't have options and believe debt is a fact of life. 

It wasn’t until my late 20s that my monthly debt payments were becoming an issue. How was I supposed to buy a house or save for a wedding with this much debt? Let’s be honest, I wasn’t close to either of those things but I wanted to be ready once I was at that point in life.

I started talking about my money struggles with peers and I learned of an entire community of people paying off large amounts of debt, in relatively small amounts of time. These people were living my dream and I couldn’t believe it took me so long to find them!

I quickly tallied up my debt and there it was, the number that I had been avoiding for a long time – the amount between me and my new debt free life: $46,514.91.

I created a budget. At the time it was more like a list of bills, and I committed to a number that I thought I could afford to pay extra towards my debt each month.

I had a target date that I was going to be debt-free but once I started to see progress, I cut the time in half. Not because I was making a ton of money but because I quickly realized how much money I was actually wasting a month. Going out to eat, new clothes, alcohol. All the things!

I was making progress and I was seeing first-hand the impact of paying extra towards my debt. I also began playing around with a few debt-free calculators online and calculated the impact of every extra dollar I paid. This became my motivation to bump up my payment to something bigger, yet manageable. It allowed me to shed years off my debt-free journey.

Each milestone was cause for celebration and motivated me to pay even more. Quickly my amount owed was $40,000, then $30,000 and eventually single digits and gone!

My budget evolved over time and became the source of my success, as cheesy as that sounds. I was able to prioritize the things I loved most, like going out to eat with friends or road trips with my partner and pup, while still paying down debt.

Some months I paid more and some less, but the goal was there and my mind was set that my future life was so much more important than the life I was living that made me more broke.

Becoming debt free doesn’t happen by accident and it doesn’t happen overnight. I had to learn what a budget was and how to stick to one. If you can’t relate to the word budget, I was right there with you! I mostly wanted to know how much extra I could be sending towards my student loans and it just so happens a budget tells you that, who would have thought!

Ready to dive into your money goals but want a bit of help? Schedule a free call today and let’s chat. This is an investment into your future. Your future self will thank you.

Sponsored: Money Gal Coaching special offer for friends of Bring Me The News.

Disclaimer: Bring Me The News will receive a portion of the proceeds from readers who purchase a service from Money Gal Coaching via our articles.

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