Paying your debt is quite a challenge nowadays especially when you have some financial responsibilities aside from your outstanding loans and balances.
My eyes have been opened to the reality of life when I was still young when my parents often asked us to stay at our mini sari-sari store at that time and sell goods to our customers. Back then, I had no idea what it was for, but I know it was our family’s way to cope up with financial responsibilities and to enable my parents to send us to school that until today is still operating and helping us to live and pay our monthly expenses.
There has been a time I proposed to my parents to scale up the sari-sari store and convert it to a grocery or mini supermarket, but since my parents didn’t like the idea of managing a large business and managing people, they just opted to just have a three door apartment near to our house.
My parents also ventured to different kinds of retail businesses. From having our own computer shop, a pisonet shop, and etc. I have observed that poverty has always it’s way to either make someone’s life difficult or it can either make someone’s life better depending on the person who has it.
Fast forward, when I was in my early 20’s, an easy-go-lucky, I spend most of my savings to an online game, to a DLSR in which I used a credit card to pay it and then I suffered later. My debt was ranging from 30,000–50,000 pesos at that time and I think I am already broke at that moment.
By the grace of God, I was able to pay it continously even at a minimum. My EQ (Emotional Quotient) has been improved significantly after that.
And then, there goes another heartbreak in 2014. Emotionally stressed, I purchased a lot in Antipolo in which I am still paying today. After three years, I purchased my first car not because I am heartbroken but I was inspired (inspired to register it to Uber as my plan A and plan B, because I thought and I was in faith that I’m going to court someone again but turned out none of my plans succeeded) — fast forward again, there’s a part in me that I regreted that decision. since having a car wasn’t practical for a single professional like me and there has been a lot of times I told my parents to help me sell it but they are encouraging me to finish what I started even it will cost a lot for me and have to make some sacrifices.
Up today, my outstanding loans has bubbled up to 6 digits . Neither of them was used for business. One is a property, another one is a car.
So here’s the five lessons I’ve learned from paying my debts:
1. Look at each debt deeper, analyze it and approach it from different angles.
I forgot to mention that I am not broke. My investments can pay my outstanding loans but I chose not to and that’s how I approach each debt from a different angle.
Since my car loan interest is fixed, and the bank could not do anything to recalculate it even I will pay twice as the minimum, if I have an extra money I just put it in as an additional investment.
My property-loan will be an easy one since it’s flexible. After paying it, instead of building my dream house there, I am planning to build an apartment on it so I can generate a passive income through it.
There’s just a cons in paying my debt in which I didn’t like — and one of them is that I have to stick being an employee for the meantime till I paid all my debts until the last centavo.
2. Anticipate needs and use tools needed to achieve your goals — which is paying the debt in full.
There has never been in my life that my math and skills improved significantly.
Since I’m an I.T Professional, I developed a macro on my own to monitor and update my financial portfolio.
You can also use some budget apps available in Appstore and Google Play.
Two apps I can recommend is AndroMoney and Wally Lite — both apps has it’s own way of reporting the summary of your expenses and how much should you spend each day depending on the target savings you have set in the application.
3. Learn how to audit. Monitor where your money goes so you will be able to check how you are doing.
Part of using the tools is to learn how to audit. The two mobile apps I’ve mentioned above helped me to audit my expenses and check how am I currently doing with my finances.
4. Deliver all your commitments, big or small.
I learned to deliver all my commitments on time whether it is big or small in my professional and freelancing experiences.
I value my client’s time but there are times that some of my freelance projects took a long time not because I failed my commitment but there’s a roadblock like lack of materials needed or information needed from the client.
5. Be practical and learn how to sacrifice. Sometimes you have to give up the good for great and there’s a great reward in waiting.
There was one product that used a motto: “Great things come to those who wait.” It is true. Most of the time instead of buying food outside the office, I often bring baon (pack lunch), sometimes I cook, sometimes what I ate in the afternoon is also the same what I will eat for dinner. You have to make some sacrifices.
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I blog about my discoveries and learnings with personal development, blogging, writing, public speaking, and publishing. I am a Jesus follower. Each month, I send out a newsletter with free tips on those topics.