Your Debt Versus Your Future
The very idea of debt is terrifying. It is a trap, an emotional burden, and in many cases, a fiscal necessity. Careful planning now can help you avoid pitfalls further down the road. Many people think they can forego and defer saving money and taking on a reasonable amount of debt. That short-term decision can have some troubling long-term consequences. Let us take a look at some of those future problems and how to avoid them.
Accumulating debt can put your grand plans on hold for far longer than you might expect. Undergraduates take on tens of thousands of dollars of debt. That can mean delaying or perhaps never attending graduate school. It can crush that dream of a life-changing trip to the other side of the world. By setting up a savings account and devoting some hours to a part-time job while still completing your undergrad, you can help keep those dreams intact. You may not remove the debt entirely, but can make it manageable and ensure it does not stand in the way of your goals.
When you let debt grow without tackling it right away, you will be forced to battle a staggering amount with frightening interest at some point in the future. Statistically, households with college graduates who eliminated their student debt end up with a net worth many times more than those still trapped in debt. The latter can mean second or third jobs, as well as various freelance work. There will be less focus on the career and dreams you want to pursue. You will have less time for friends and family due to random jobs to ensure you make enough. Your work-life balance will crumble. By setting aside a reasonable amount of time in the present, you can create a better balance in the future.
Stress has an extraordinary impact on your physical and mental well-being. Eating well and exercising can only do so much. An American Psychological Association study found that finances are one of the biggest stress factors. Your impacted credit score keeping you from your dream home, your ideal career feeling out of reach, and lack of control over your life can cause severe depression and anxiety. This will inevitably affect your physical health as well, from aches and pains to diseases and conditions later in life. Take the right steps now while you are healthy. You can ensure many years of good health to come.
Debt itself may not be avoidable in many circumstances, but the negative repercussions are a different matter. Devote time and energy right now to manage debt you currently have or plan to have in the future. Monitor your expenses, take on a part-time job, and invest your savings. The sooner you start means the sooner better money habits will develop. This can help you meet your life goals, achieve a good work-life balance, and maintain your health. This is a lifelong challenge for all of us. Debt may be scary, but careful planning is your best weapon to defeat it.
Brown, Ron. “How Can Debt Have a Negative Effect on your Life? R.L. Brown Wealth Management. https://rlbrownwealth.com/how-can-debt-have-a-negative-affect-on-your-life/
Williams, Terri. “10 Ways Student Debt Can Destroy Your Life.” Investopedia. https://www.investopedia.com/articles/personal-finance/100515/10-ways-student-debt-can-destroy-your-life.asp
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