Life after debt

Today’s post is written by my friend, Camilla Kragius, author of the new book How To Get Out Of Debt Living Paycheck to Paycheck: 9 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom. Camilla is a challenger of the status quo who wants you to leave your comfort zone and start living! She loves to travel, go on adventure and inspire others to work on their goals and dreams. She writes about life, productivity, finances and ways to get off the traditional path. She lives in Utah where she spends her time playing in the outdoors. You can find her at No More Hamster Wheel and The Traveling after debt

Do you work?

That’s a question I get surprisingly often. To a lot of people my life must look like one long string of play and fun. And for the most part it is. But it wasn’t always that way. For a long time it was a long string of stress, sleepless nights and regrets thanks to debt. A lot of it.

At first it was manageable. I mean, everyone has debt, right? That was the lie I told myself. I didn’t grow up being told debt was normal so I tried to find an excuse.

Then as time went along the debt increased, decreased and increased. Many of you recognize the yojo-ing when it comes to debt. You get smart and start paying things down. Then you get tired because you don’t see much change so you give up because you feel as if you are just spinning the wheel going nowhere.

So you head back to the mindset that minimum payments are part of life and one day something miraculously will happen like a mega bonus at work or even better a mega win on the lottery. Because after all, something that drastic might be the only way out. I used the excuse that if I only made more money I would be able to pay off my debt. Well, I didn’t have an income problem. I had a spending problem.

Without a change in mindset sooner or later you hit rock bottom and you are down to three choices. Declare bankruptcy, go homeless or find a way to pay it off. The first two didn’t sound like fun so I choose the latter. It wasn’t particularly fun either.  I think having the stomach flu for a month would be compare.

But I’m here to tell you it’s worth it. Every single day I’m so grateful that I made the decision to get out of debt. Today I have freedom. I can travel, spend time with friends, go places, enjoy life. Can I do everything I want? Of course not but when people wonder if I work it’s a great testament to that I’m living a life that looks like I’m not working because the financial freedom I now have allows me to play a lot.

So on days when you feel as if you are stuck spinning the wheel going nowhere tally up how much money you will be able to put into your savings account once you are done paying off your debt. Then visualize yourself getting off the wheel. Because once you are off a whole new world opens up. A world where people will ask you “Do you work?”

Note from Kristin: I am so excited to get where Camilla is right now. Do you want to get there too? Check out Camilla’s book How To Get Out Of Debt Living Paycheck to Paycheck: 9 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom.