A majority of problem with getting and staying out of debt is actually getting to the place where you realize that the way that you currently think about money has got you into this hole, and without a change in the way that you’re thinking you don’t have a chance to get and stay out.
Our culture has gotten to the point that kitty cats and dead people can get approved for credit. This was dramatically displayed by a television commercial for Master Card. In the commercial, a zoo keeper has a cough, but leaves his Master Card behind in the elephant’s place. What does the caring elephant do, but go out and use Master Card’s new technology (and the zookeeper’s card) to buy soup, cough medicine and a blanket– awe.
The kicker? The elephant doesn’t return the card, or tell the zookeeper how he purchased the item, so just about the time the zookeeper’s feeling better and notices that his card is gone, he’s getting charged 25% interest on that $100.00 worth of medicine because he didn’t leave his insurance card with the elephant either.
I jest, but you get the picture. The credit industry is all about showing you how easy it is to spend their money, but not showing the fact that they’re constantly having to go before local governments because they end up charging the equivalent of usury. They do not tell you the statistics that say that– regardless of your mantra about paying the card off in full every month– you will carry a balance at some point in time (especially if your card is your emergency fund).
You need the mental reinforcement that you cash do it without debt, but you also need the plan. Have you gotten your starter emergency fund yet? If not, what are you waiting for?!