After paying over $2,000 towards student loans this past month (take that!) I’ve reflected on how far I still have to go to get them gone. I’m sorry to say how much I think about it, but then I think ‘just a little more work and I’ll be less in debt’ and it propels me forward. I have a good balance, but I know I won’t be free until its gone…in five years. I’ve officially set a timeframe of five years for myself. I’ll be 31/32 at that time, so here’s hoping for the best.
Whenever I start to doubt why I put so much energy into getting them gone, I think of different things. There are numerous reasons anyone can give for wanting to be out of debt. I’ve given a lot of thought to ‘why now, why not just slack a little and live versus putting so much energy into them’. Well, the interest rates are a good reason for that! I have several friends taking the slower pace, but I have a little more than the average graduate and I want the peace of mind and financial freedom.
1-To have the freedom of knowing I’m no longer in debt.
2-To not feel guilty or fret over eating out, going to a movie or a tour that costs more than $5 (or even $5!)
3-To be able to buy the people I love proper gifts or even have the time to make said gifts
4-To buy little things, like a poster frame, that I currently can’t give a good enough reason to buy (ok other than the fact of decorating and having said posters)
5-To have less stress overall
6-To be able to walk into the grocery store and buy what you want without sticking to as strict a budget. You know a $200 grocery bill versus a strict $120 one.
7-To travel to far off places. One of my biggest dreams is to see the world, but it requires money (usually).
8-To buy the books I really want to read as opposed to wishful thinking with rarer books.
9-To buy a 3DS, PS3 and eventually a PS4.
10-To finish my Doctor Who themed bathroom.
11-To support small businesses as opposed to bigger ones (voting with my dollar)
12-To buy more geeky things, in general (a geek can never have too much!)
13-To create a proper garden (gardening does have an upkeep and start up cost)
14-Donate more to causes that I support and give more time to said causes
15-To be able to freely give to someone in need
16-To afford better stuff to organize my house
17-To save for retirement (because currently its looking grim)
18-To go to conventions like comic con
19-To buy spontaneous gifts for those I love
20-To be healthier (money means taking the fitness classes I’ve always wanted to!)
21- To not ‘cheap out’ on some things
22- To cover the tab for a friend who needs it without worrying
23- To pay for volunteer experiences and missionary work (did you know you have to pay for some, I don’t have $2,500 to volunteer abroad!)
24- To invest in better quality clothing
25-To save up for a house/afford a better place
26- To have more freetime (because the money I’m putting towards extra earnings would be gone!)
27- Interest rates on student loans are a nightmare. The quicker they’re gone, the less those awful companies get!
28-I’m tired of talking about my student loans and how they hold me back
29- To be more liberal with spendings, donations etc.
30- To run in 5K’s that I want to run in, to support a good cause, but cost $30+ a person
31- To further my education beyond my Bachelors of Art degree (without student loans at that!)
32- To better myself because of less stress and because I can live freely
33- To help others stop worrying about my student loans along with me
34- To experience more of the world around me (isn’t it sad how much money can control this?)
35- To feel truly free and not feel as though I can’t make any big changes or move without risking financial suicide
Some of these may have sounded similar, but they’re different in my mind and all equal the same. I want them gone and I’m ready to work hard to do just that! Five years or less, here I come!