Is it just me or have lies gotten you into some pretty rough patches . . . breakups, fights, fired, DEBT! Sigh, some of the most unnecessary things! Crazy, I know, but since we are here in the MissCFO community let’s dig into the debt piece. Really, what could be worse than debt?!
It’s 2016, if you have been around the water cooler a time or two, then you likely understand the basics of debt. If you do not get the water cooler reference, then you are probably too young to be reading this and also too young to have debt! If for some reason, you do not understand the basics of debt, then do not worry that is why MissCFO is here!
Understanding that the average professional Women like yourself understands debt, it baffles me that in 2016, debt is still often referenced with a shrug.
In 2015, the average American household had $129,579 in debt. That statement alone should have you running to your wallet to cut up your credit cards. It likely will not and that is why we need to discuss these lies you keep telling yourself that keep you in debt.
I had the great pleasure to be apart of the launch team for the re-release of the Real Money Answers For Every Woman. If you are not familiar with that book it was originally written in 2014 by Patrice Washington. Patrice has been featured in numerous articles, quoted in dozens of newspapers and magazines and appeared on hundreds of radio stations and television networks, including Bloomberg TV, Forbes, The Huffington Post, CNN Money and Black Enterprise. Each week, 8 million listeners tune in to hear her “Real Money Answers” segment on the nationally syndicated Steve Harvey Morning Radio Show. What initially drew me to Patrice was her girlfriend style, real conversation. Hence, I was really excited about Real Money Answers 2.
Real Money Answers for Every Woman teaches you how to take responsibility for your financial future, whether you’re just starting out or need a fresh start. In a handy Q & A format, it offers relatable and easy to understand and implement advice on everything from managing credit cards, home ownership, and student loans to affordable childcare and even negotiating for a higher salary. Following Patrice’s practical advice, you’ll learn to form “wealthy” habits, establish an “opportunity fund,” stop collecting STUFF that causes debt, and discover the freedom that comes from feeling financially secure.
Now, let’s get back to our debt discussion. One of my biggest takeaways from the book was Patrice’s discussion on a money mindset.
Building wealth has 100% nothing to do with money; it has 100% everything to do with you and your mindset towards money.
Often times, many of the tips we learn in these personal finance books are worthless because they are being given to individuals who have a negative association with money and mental blockages that keep them in a cycle of financial despair. It was really effective when Real Money Answers began with discussing the mind. In that section, Patrice highlighted a few common lies we tell ourselves that keep us in debt.
The Lies that Keep You in Debt:
1. I bought it on sale. – Just because a $1,200 dress is 50% off does not make it a good deal for you. We have all been here before. You are in the store, staring down a designer little black dress that is finally on sale. Even though you have 4 other cute little black dresses at home, you convince yourself that you must have it. “Buying something you don’t need is never better than saving money for your actual needs.”
2. I had a hard week, I deserve it. – Yes you work hard, many of us do. Yes you deserve all of the amazing things that the world has to offer. However, the question is whether a new pair of shoes is worth staying in debt for. “As much as I deserve ____________, don’t I deserve to be debt free even more.”
3. All of my girlfriends wanted to do a spa day. – Sigh, classic case of keeping up with the Joneses. When will we stop trying to buy our friends and earn them? (Some of you all will catch that later.)
4. My son needs a car at school. – Then your son should get a job! Real Money Answers has a great section on creating entitled kids that made even me question some of my parenting.
If you tell yourself any of these statements, please:
To Read or Not to Read?
Real Money Answers for Every Woman is a great foundation book for Women to begin the entire process of financial management. I appreciate that it starts with the mindset, which is often the hardest area to improve when it comes to financial matters. For me that gives it two thumbs up! Additionally, it is not full of sunshine and rainbows like a lot of other books. It is real, and a little harsh, but oh so needed.
MissCFO Takeaway: You can continue to lie yourself into more debt, but lying only keeps you on the ground.