The value of fear
Do you have debt? If so how does it make you feel? Do you think about it at all, or are you avoiding it at all costs?
We all tend to avoid things that make us uncomfortable. It’s human nature to try and save ourselves from discomfort. From an evolutionary standpoint it makes a ton of sense not to seek out things that cause us fear or pain. Why are you careful when you are at the top of a ladder? Probably, because you’ve fallen before and you know that it hurts. Hopefully it wasn’t from the top of a ladder, but most of us have fallen off something and bruised ourselves enough to learn that when you are standing on something tall and dangerous it pays to be careful.
That fear of pain is there for a reason. It saves us from hurting ourselves too badly. We avoid the pain by being aware of the danger and compensating with greater attention to our movements and balance. So what would happen if you climbed to the top of a ladder, closed your eyes and let go of the rungs? Your chances of falling would be way higher and so would your fear.
For me debt is really similar.
If you owe money, but don’t know how much - and at what interest rate - you are standing at the top of that ladder, with your eyes closed, not holding on. The problem with debt is that the longer you stay on the ladder the higher it gets, while at the same time, the higher your risk of permanent financial damage becomes. It’s what wakes you up in the middle of the night and what causes you to hesitate when you don’t know who is calling, just in case it’s a bill collector. That fear is trying to tell you something. It’s trying to help you save your financial life, if you will listen to it.
The first step in reducing your financial risk is coming clean about what you owe, what the interest rates are and when you need to pay it back by. It’s the equivalent of opening your eyes and grabbing hold. It doesn’t stop the ladder from getting higher, but it does stabilize you.
It takes courage to open your eyes and face your debt, especially if you have been ignoring it for a while, but once you have taken that first step it becomes easier and easier to take the next ones.
If you want to talk about your debt, please schedule a free 1 hour session with me. Together we can look at where you are, why you are stuck and how I can help.