Handle your Debt

By Lisa Mallard, Budgeting Boomers

Debt related stress can cause not only sleepless nights and arguments with your loved ones, but studies have shown that it can cause depression as well. Feelings of sadness and anxiety are normal but for some feelings of hopelessness and loss of joy in life makes them feel trapped in their debt forever rendering them paralyzed and incapable of acting on a debt reduction plan. A job loss or mortgage foreclosure on top of a mountain of debt can send someone spiraling into that deep, dark hole known as depression.
To make matters worse, depression can lead to risky financial decisions resulting in more debt. For some, spending money is a way to boost their mood. As this behavior continues, family and friends tend to separate themselves from the problem, physical problems begin to surface and life seems out of control.

There are actions you can take to stop debt from controlling your life.

– Stop creating more debt immediately. Cut up the credit cards. Stop shopping for pleasure.
– Talk to someone you trust. Be it your spouse, a friend, a pastor or a professional, talk to someone. Saying it out loud and finding support helps you take ownership of the debt and know that you are not alone.
– Make a plan. Getting a plan together takes the power away from the debt and gives it back to you.
– Take care of yourself physically. Eat right, exercise and get some sleep. You’ll be amazed what that can do for your emotional well-being.
– Recognize that tackling your debt will not be easy but it must be done. Take control and be accountable.
– Learn the symptoms of depression and be on the lookout for those feelings and reactions.

It is important to get a handle on your debt and not let it destroy your life. Today is the day that you take your life back from debt. Today is the day that you move forward with a plan to say “goodbye” to debt once and for all.

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