At the beginning of April I broke up with my credit cards. It was a break up that I should have seen coming. In fact, the signs were pretty clear. I had basically stopped shopping mindlessly, when I thought about credit and my credit cards I shuddered, and I just was over using them.
The other big development that occurred was a slow but steady change in how I thought about life and my pursuit of happiness. Mindless consumption didn’t really factor into it my happiness anymore, it hindered it.
I Had Reached Contentment
I’m not sure when it happened. One day I just woke up and was satisfied with my messy, imperfect life. I just wanted to see my mom, go for a bike ride and drink a really good cup of coffee. And hang out with friends and go on the occasional trip. The point was, other than those things I realized that I had enough. Enough food, wonderful shelter, and enough clothing. I have more than enough support from others as I pursue my dreams, share my concerns, and ask for advice.
When I was using credit on a regular basis they were being used to fill certain needs. I was trying to keep up with the Joneses (they were broke too-I’m reading their blogs too!) I was trying to keep up with the thoughts in my mind about how I should present myself to others. And, I realized over time that I was also depressed. Large amounts of credit and depression are a combustable combination. Mix them together and they have the potential to explode spectacularly in your face.
The Break Up
It was pretty cold of me I admit. I just locked them away and let them go. Like an old boyfriend who just won’t let go. Once I’m done I’m done and after too many years of dealing with mindless spending I was over it. I quit cold turkey. Quitting cold turkey was a lot easier than I expected. I just thought about the amount of time and energy that I’ve spent thinking about debt, worrying about debt, and paying on debt and I was done. I just am uninterested in spending money that I don’t have to make other people rich. Where is the sense in that? I want to make myself rich and finally, finally I’ve figured out the formula.
The Formula to Getting Rich
The order is up to you but I would say that being content should always be first.
- Be content
- Be intentional about your money
- Everything can be done at a high level of quality for less. This means you might be learning how to fix, mend, or create an item instead of spending money.
- Spend less
- Live in a smaller place. Kids can share a room a little longer than you think. Look at your parents and grandparents-they survived!
- You’re not a hip hop star/Taylor Swift/or a Kardashian. Stop trying.
- Your own life is amazing.
- Take risks
- Pay off Debt
- Forgive yourself when you make a money mistake and learn from the experience.
I’m sure there’s more to being rich but I’m not just talking about money. I’m talking about a state of mind and quality of life. I quit shopping, I quit grocery shopping mindlessly, I am on a cash budget, and I feel great. Change is in the air.
Could You Quit Your Credit Cards? Why or Why Not?
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