This blog is being created out of necessity. My very way of life is being threatened. And it’s being threatened by me. My over-spending, poor money management habits and utter laziness have led me into a deep hole of debt but I am now committed to see myself, as well as anyone around me who is in debt, out of it. It’s funny. I thought that not worrying about money was the way to happiness, but that doesn’t work when you make a below-average salary and spend like you’re Patrick Bateman in 1988. I am FINALLY letting go of the notion that I am eventually going to make a lot of money, so there’s no need to pay off this debt now when I can pay it off in one fell swoop when I hit my big payday. I stopped dreaming and had a better realization. I realized that I am capable of making a lot of money (It’s different for everyone. “A lot of money” to me is anything above $120,000 annually per person), but I have to dedicate myself to finding the way to make that money in my actions every single day. This doesn’t involve planning my dream closet, browsing the Neiman Marcus website or checking airline ticket prices to Singapore on a daily basis. It doesn’t include looking at everyone and their mom’s Facebook pictures, checking Heidi Montag’s Twitter page or even reading Yelp reviews of good restaurants in the neighborhood*. It does involve making The American Debt Project into a fountain of knowledge, ideas and great discussion about the role money plays in everyone’s lives. Improving this blog is just one action that I can take daily to get on the path to a healthy income.
Me and My “Crazy” Ideas
I am a person of ideas. While I work full-time in a project management role (thus American Debt Project, get it?), my brain wanders off daily to consider possibilities, businesses, ideas and stories. This might have to do with my entrepreneur mindset that I developed while receiving my certification in project management. Everything fascinates me. Frankly, I think this is my downfall. My co-worker and good friend told me her favorite part of the day is when I announce from my desk, “I have an idea!” and she gets ready to listen to another one of my schemes/plans/dreams. I’ve started so many projects that I’ve lost count. Some I have finished, most I have not. I have a lot of passion for my ideas, but most of them require funding and I have to pay off my debt to be able to be put my ideas into action, and it is an important part of my life that has been held back by debt. You might be thinking “it’s probably a good thing she doesn’t have any capital to put into her harebrained schemes.” and you might be correct, but it’s still my motivation for getting out of debt.
Necessity is the mother of invention, and I plan to invent my way out of thirty-eight thousand dollars in debt. But it’s not really about me (only). It’s about showing everyone that there is a better, more sustainable path for us as people, and we don’t have to be consumers who are hog-tied and screwed at every turn. It’s patriotic to know how to handle your money, live within your means, and know where every dollar goes. It is only appropriate that my first official post for the American Debt Project is on my birthday, a day to celebrate with friends and family and be grateful for all that you have (or is that Thanksgiving? I pretty much do the same spiel on any holiday or occasion). I know that I am lucky for everything I have when it comes to family, friends, love, my health, a steady income, and most of all my excitement. I am so excited to share my ideas, the articles I come across, and anything relevant to being financially sound on this blog. Let’s make the journey together to being debt-free and being able to provide for loved ones, organizations and the ideas we want to launch into reality.
The American Debt Project is Born
I have been planning the American Debt Project for some time, and I have been on the path to debt reduction since August 2010 (when I was at $46,000 in debt), so there has already been progress. I am committed to sticking with this blog until I carry zero debt and hopefully well beyond that. But I have at least made that commitment. I turned 28 today, I have a boyfriend I live with, and we have no kids. There is no time like the present to turn our financial future around!
*I probably do all of those things at least once a week. Sad, I know. I mention my internet distractions here because it is where I waste the most time and yet it is a resource with so much potential and I could be generating income from my addiction to the internet.