Happiness Between Tails embraces joy — of writing tales… reading tales in books… cohabiting peacefully with our fellow creatures, some who have tails…
… arts… including music.. dance… cooking…
… and happiness — that includes living debt-worry free!
Here to address money is blogger Mr. Nahas. Down-to-earth and compassionate, he offers uncomplicated financial advice…
I hope all is well with you! My name is Justin Nahas, aka Mr. Nahas on my blog about economic freedom.
I was born, raised, and still live in sunny Florida. I graduated from the University of South Florida with a B.A. in Economics.
I have a passion for personal finance and economics — I just find the subjects so fascinating. I love how they can be applied to real life, and that there is always something new to learn about them. On my blog, I try to help people become financially literate, to take control of their finances.
Money is a problem in every part of the world and in many households. It’s important that those like me who enjoy personal finance and economics share their knowledge with others. One day I hope that I can blog full-time and continue to teach others through my failures, mistakes — and successes.
Today, I’ll discuss debt — but not how you might expect. I’m going to go over the emotional struggles that come with owing money and how to overcome those challenges.
Debt has a significant impact how we think, talk, and behave. I believe that getting over the psychological effects of debt is the crucial first step to living debt-free!
So, grab that cup of coffee that you made at home because you enjoy saving money, and let’s get started!
Have you ever thought about your debts and immediately began to stress out or have anxiety? Does the thought of your burdens make you feel like you can’t breathe? Do you constantly wonder if you are going to be able to repay the money owe?
Whether we want to realize it or not, debt impacts our well being. It can lead to stress, anxiety, low self-esteem, and even depression; that’s not something you should live with.
A study conducted by Elizabeth Sweet, a professor of Anthropology at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, suggested that “higher debt is associated with worse health in a national cohort.” It proved that, “reporting high financial debt relative to available assets is associated with higher perceived stress and depression, worse self-reported general health, and higher diastolic blood pressure.” Sweet’s is only one study of many that link debt to well-being.
You aren’t alone in emotionally struggling with debt. Many are in the same boat as you. Many others feel stressed, depressed, anxious, worried, and worse.
That’s okay. It is normal to have that feeling, but you don’t have to accept it as the end-all. Together, we can tackle this emotional struggle.
By now, you’re probably asking, “But Mr. Nahas, how can I get over these feelings?”
That is a fantastic question. Read on for steps you can take.
1. Feelings Validation
I want you to know that it’s okay to have feelings about your debt; there’s nothing wrong with it. It’s essential that you know that your feelings are normal, and you shouldn’t feel ashamed. That said, you can’t live in your feelings; you can’t let them get in the way of your goals and overwhelm you to the point where you shutdown.
At the same time, just because you feel anxious doesn’t mean that you should just sit down and do nothing; you need to do the opposite. Instead of saying, “I am feeling stressed. I am ashamed of feeling stressed; I don’t want to do anything,” tell yourself, “I feel stressed, and that is okay. I need to let this stress motivate me to get out of debt.”
You have the biggest asset known to man – your mind. The beautiful thing about your mind is that you can control all of your thoughts and actions. Use your thinking to your advantage; tackle these feelings.
One way to do that is to accept that it’s okay to feel sad, anxious, stressed, etc. Another is to know that you don’t have to continually live with these feelings. Be proactive. What I mean by this is that when you get these feelings, tell youself, “It’s okay,” and then say, “I don’t have to live with this debt; it’s possible to get rid of it, and I will get rid of it.”
Always remind yourself that debt can be managed and that it’s totally possible to get rid of it entirely. Keep affirming to yourself that what you owe doesn’t define you and that it’s only temporary. This journey starts with your attitude and thoughts. Think, and it can be achieved!
Now you might ask, “Mr. Nahas, can I take a run or workout whenever I feel stressed or have these feelings?” Absolutely! Physical exercise can help tremendously with those feelings, but don’t forget to tell yourself what I mentioned above!
Validation: It’s okay to feel the way you feel. Don’t be ashamed. Use your feelings to make you stronger.
2. Acceptance and Realization
You need to accept that you have debt; it may seem trivial, but it’s an important step.
“Mr. Nahas, why would I need to do this?” Good question!
You can’t shy away from this problem; you need to tackle it head-on. It’s not one of those things where you can say, “Out of sight, out of mind.” It’s actually really dangerous to say that because you will then let compound growth take effect and wreak havoc.
To be in control of your debt, you must take control of it. Make a list of all the debts that you have and accept that you have them — and then realize that you don’t have to live with them.
You can pay them off and be free, but it’s going to take some work. It’s totally possible to dig yourself out from them, even if you are at the bottom. There are so many people who have then climbed out; they will tell you it’s hard work, but they will also say that it’s completely possible and worth it.
3. Be Proactive
Before you move on to this step, you must understand and practice the two previous ones. You need to know it’s okay to have bad feelings about your debt, but you shouldn’t accept that you have to live with them. You need to accept that you have the debt — then realize that it’s possible to pay it off.
“But Mr. Nahas, where do I start?” you ask?
It’s important to have financial philosophies you’ll live by. They will help you see what’s important in your life and what isn’t. Once you realize that, you can create a budget and stick to it.
This may be hard for the first couple of months, but sacrifice now is worth living debt-free later. Once you stick to your financial philosophies and budget, you will see progress. Your mood, attitude, and feelings will change for the better. How long it takes to get rid of debt only depends on how much you owe. You got this!
I hope that I was able to help you with the emotional struggles of owing money. It’s totally possible to resolve all your bills; you just need to believe in yourself and master your mind. There will be struggles and days ahead where you feel like you “just can’t” — but you need to be strong and move forward. Keep being proactive.
If you have any questions or need me to clarify something, post a comment and I will reach out to you as soon as I can.
Thank you, friends, for stopping by! Take care and see you soon!
P.S. Don’t forget to visit my site, where my goal is to help as many people as possible!
What are your tips for feeling happier about your money?