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How You’re Accidentally Consciously in Credit Card Debt

Debt is the ugly four-letter word that may be all too familiar. Somehow, despite your best efforts, it tiptoes into your life, and one day you realize you’re barely making the minimum payments. How does this happen?

It’s simple - you’re living a life you can’t afford.

Giving up something you’ve come to enjoy is difficult. It could be eating out, a costly hobby, buying clothes, the latest gadgets, traveling, or activities with friends. 

If you have credit card debt, you cannot afford to do these things unless you’re paying cash for the purchase. 

The Trap
It’s a common problem. When you know you’re low on funds, you tell yourself you’ll purchase it on credit now and pay it off in the next month or two. But, that doesn’t happen, and you find you’re in a similar situation the following week when you’re charging something else. Sound familiar?

It’s a never-ending cycle of always wanting more, always spending more, always digging a deeper hole in debt. 

The Answer
The key is to change your behavior, shifting from wanting more to finding fulfillment in other aspects of life. 

The Plan 
Get Comfortable
It’s not enough to swear you’ll never use your credit card again. Instead, get comfortable with the idea that if you can’t pay cash for something, you’re not buying it. Making that simple switch is an eye-opening experience. Why? Because up to now, you have a skewed idea of what it means to live within your budget and your credit card debt is the evidence.  

Exchange Sacrifice for Willingness 
You will learn activities you once enjoyed may not all fit into your budget, and you may begin to feel the sting of sacrifice. Exchange that feeling of sacrifice for willingness to allow your ideas of fulfillment to evolve in a more financially and emotionally responsible way.   

Invest in Yourself
You may find you have more alone time when you're more mindful about how you spend your money. While you’re working on getting back on track financially, consider using the downtime to invest in yourself. Take the time to explore your passions, learn something new, exercise, and expand your world in other ways.       

Master Fulfillment
Possessions often provide temporary satisfaction. Lasting fulfillment comes from other aspects of life, such as achievement, relationships, connection, and exploration. When you begin to think of fulfillment in these terms, you begin to lose the never-ending need for things. 

Changing your behavior from wanting more to finding fulfillment in other ways directly impacts your relationship with your finances. It breaks the cycle of compulsive spending. When you realize you can enjoy life in a meaningful way without incurring unnecessary debt, you begin to live a life you can not only afford but one that is more broadly fulfilling.