You can’t get out of debt until you want to

Over this last week or so I had a conversation with a friend—just the normal catching up after not talking for a while.  I was asked about how I was doing with “all that budgeting stuff you were trying.”  I filled them in and told them how I felt that I was really doing pretty well—not near where I want to be but getting there slowly but surely.   The comment I received back was “wow, I wish I could do that but I can’t because……”  From there you can just fill in the blank because it doesn’t really matter what the reason was.

As harsh as this might sound—it doesn’t matter because it was just an excuse.  I should know because I used to be full of them.  I can’t get out of debt because it’s hard, because I don’t make enough money, because I owe too much, because I don’t know where to begin…you get the drift. What it really boiled down to was I didn’t want to try.

So what did I say to my friend?  Well, I told her that as awesome as I am (and extremely modest too!) that if I could do it, anyone could.   She just laughed it off and said that as happy as she was for me, she just didn’t think that she could do it.  And so I left it alone and we moved the conversation onto other topics for a while.  But the whole time we spoke I was wondering when she would (or if she would) come to the day when she would want to start getting out of debt.

I wasn’t willing to work to get myself out of debt for a long time—I got into debt shortly after I was 18 and never thought about when I would get out of it.  The really sad part?  I had a friend who was excellent at budgeting and working to get himself out of debt.  And when he asked me when I was going to get myself a plan to get out of debt I made much the same comment to him that my friend did to me.   Now I wish that I would have started to get my act together a long time ago.

My point to this whole post (and I do have one, I’m not just babbling) is that you can’t be helped out of debt until you are willing to work to get yourself out of debt.  You know the old saying—you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make them drink?  It’s true.  You can show a person how to budget but if they don’t want to, they won’t stick to it.  But hopefully my friend will show an interest in starting to budget and plan when she sees me doing it.


4 Comments on “You can’t get out of debt until you want to”

  1. Michelle says:

    I agree, if you really want to get out of debt, you’d try.

  2. You’re exactly right! Especially with the “excuses”…it’s too hard, I don’t have enough money. If I didn’t finally get over those excuses, I’d still be “thinking” about getting out of debt. But instead, I’m pressing on and being excited for even the small victories. So what if I don’t have a million dollars to wipe out my debt in the blink of an eye. I’ll gladly take what extra money I do have, along with a PLAN, to tackle this debt and be done with it!
    I too have friends who say they are broke but, in the very next sentence, will talk about their latest purchase. Just like you, I try to be positive in telling them that they can get out of debt and choose not to be broke. Until then, I just hope I can be an example of success, one that they feel a close connection to.

    • bogofdebt says:

      Exactly. I also have to try to not roll my eyes when I’m feeling particuarly snarky (but I also try to be that snakry) and they tell me about this great concert they went to but that there water is shut off. I figure lead by example, right?
      I’m glad to hear that you have a PLAN and take your victories where you can 😉 (I still love the feeling I get when it’s all caps lol )

  3. You are absolutely right. I have a friend who thinks one will always be in debt so why bother. It use to madden me, but now I just figure to each their own.

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