Snowballs

Please tell me that I’m not the only one out there that develops mini “obsessions” from time to time. You know—like when you get really, really excited about trying something new and you need to know everything about it or get all the accessories that come with it and it consumes all of your free time?  I need to know that I’m not alone here.

Some obsessions are pretty minor. Like that time I was obsessed with loose leaf tea for a few months. I mean, I still love loose leaf tea and I will probably drink a lot more of it again in the fall and winter months but there was a short period of time where I was OBSESSED and needed to try all sorts of flavors of get different kinds of steeping mugs….I went a little overboard.

Then, there was my short love affair with jane.com…..oh my. If you’ve never heard of it, don’t go. Just don’t do it. You’ll thank me later. But, if you’ve been there, then you probably understand the desire to try out EVERY $5 pair of fleece lined leggings or $12 adorable tunic because it just looks so damn cute on those models, right? And, they’re not just models, they become your friends because the same 10 models are used again and again so you get really accustomed to looking at pictures of them and knowing just how something that looks cute on them will SURELY look cute on you. That’s how that works, right? Not to mention the fact that these deals only last 24 hours! Get ‘em while they’re hot girls!

Over the years, I’ve also had some hot romances with J. Crew, Reddit (who can resist those meaningless internet points?), keto dieting, my Trek road bike, Dooce, Fitnessista (I still love you Gina–I’m just no longer obsessed with your life and becoming just like you–it’s not as creepy as it sounds. Just go with it.), looking up pictures of dead bodies on Mt. Everest–you know, normal stuff. I’ve also been known to really get into a good book series including audiobooks (before motherhood, obviously, when I still had time to read). Ok, so not all of them were good book series (I’m talking about you, 50 Shades of Gray) but damn if I didn’t get sucked into them!

Now, these “obsessions”, while some are innocent and entertaining, some were not always easy on the pocketbook and I’ve never been the best at managing money (there are blog topics for the future here, can’t you just feel it?) And, like the millions of average Americans in my age range, I have amassed large amounts of student loans…..which leads me to my newest obsession (and I’m really thinking this one is going to stick around for a long time).

Dave Ramsey.

Have you heard of him? Have you read his books? Do you listen to his daily radio show or podcast? Has he changed your life with a Total Money Makeover? Are you working your Debt Snowball?

Dave has helped millions of people make a budget and get themselves out of tons of debt. He’s a fascinating guy that’s made a lot of financial mistakes in his past but has now basically built a christian based financial empire that focuses on turning people’s minds around about debt. His ‘Total Money Makeover’ has 7 Baby Steps.

I’m on Baby Step 1. Save a $1000 Emergency Fund. I’ll have it finished in the next 2 months. Then, I’ll move onto Baby Step 2, which is to start tackling all of my debt, smallest to largest. Dave calls this a Debt Snowball. Basically, you attack your smallest debt first and throw any extra money you can at it while you continue to make the minimum payments on the remainder of your debts. You live on beans and rice. You sell things. You take on additional work to increase your income. All of your friends and family think you’re weird. Once the smallest debt is paid off, you take the money you were throwing at it and throw it at the next largest debt. You can see how you can really start hacking out some huge chunks once you really get going (picture a snowball rolling down a hill…GET IT?)

So, I know that this really doesn’t sound like any fun…at all. And, I have no idea how Dave has gotten me whipped up into such an excited frenzy about paying off my debt, BUT HE HAS!! I’ve been waking up at 5am and going on walks for the last week and a half, not just for the exercise, BUT TO LISTEN TO HIS DAILY PODCASTS!!

I am officially obsessed. And I’m on my way to financial freedom. And I feel empowered. And I feel like it’s all totally doable. And I’m not even mad about it.

No longer will I snowball out of control with pricey “obsessions”. I’m now in a romantic relationship with my budget.

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