The year 2010 was a rough one. My wife and I were reeling from a bad real estate situation brought on by the mid-decade housing crash. My small IT consulting business had failed, leaving me dependent upon temp jobs. Our marriage was so fractured I wasn’t sure it was fixable.
Then I caught a vicious left hook from Depression that just about took me out for good.
Meanwhile, we were dipping into meager savings each month to keep the lights on. The liberal use of our American Express card for restaurants, movies, fuel and whatever else we “needed” was status quo for us.
Trying desperately to keep our heads above water we started using credit cards with revolving lines of credit. When those were maxed out we transferred balances to cards with lower interest rates. We were robbing Peter to pay Paul every month anddigging the hole deeper day by day.
In my heart I knew this wasn’t sustainable, but I didn’t have a clue what else to do.
Some Relief…Sort Of…
We finally got a break, unloading a piece of real estate that had been an anvil hanging around our necks for years. We moved out of our rental and bought a beautiful home in a nearby subdivision.
It seemed like the sun was starting to shine again…but not really. Our situation had changed but our behavior had not. In fact, we were incurring more debt…a new car, a new credit card and a home equity line. Even though we felt better we were still getting further behind each month.
I felt like I’d been wrestling with a grizzly bear…claw and tooth marks from head to toe! Money worries plagued my every waking moment…even seeping into my dreams.
My pride was wounded and I just couldn’t bring myself to ask for help. But the feelings of powerlessness had become just too much to carry around.
So, swallowing my pride, I reached out to a pastor friend. He told me something that seemed overly simple, but turned out to be exactly what I needed to hear. As a pastor, I thought he would tell me something like, “just pray about it”. What he told me was closer to, “God helps those who help themselves”.
He went on to say, “you are where you are because you planned to be there — whether you know it or not — and if you want to be somewhere else you have to do something else…you need a new plan”.
I suddenly understood I was NOT fundamentally flawed, but was missing a skill set. I shook off the crippling self-doubt and self pity and resolved to change my situation.
I dug in and learned everything I could about money. Not all the theoretical crap but real, useful strategies.
My wife and I rolled up our sleeves and worked together to fix our financial mistakes. We started paying attention to where our money was going, stopped borrowing money, paid off our debt and got serious about saving for college and retirement.
Finally Making Real Progress…
In total, we paid off $287,000, including our home, in a relatively short period of time. We also met several other important financial goals, including paying for my grad school education, saving toward our daughter’s education and building a nest egg for retirement.
Through this process we learned not only how to discuss money, but to talk productively about other important topics. This process forged me into a better father, husband and man.
Meanwhile, I finished my graduate degree and started working.
Now I help men and women who, like my wife and me, want to change the trajectory of their financial lives. I help them truly fix their their financial situation rather than simply slapping a bandage on a gunshot wound.
I show them that their financial problems have less to do with their bank accounts and more to do with other important factors. I guide them through the process of defining “wealth” for themselves then help them move toward it. I show them how to maximize their buying power on any income.
And I do all of this in a direct but respectful way that leaves people feeling positive and motivated rather than shamed and embarrassed.
I’d be happy to speak with you about your situation and see if I can help you meet your goals. There are two easy ways to get schedule your free 30-minute call with me. 1. Click the button below and grab a spot on my schedule. 2. Call us.
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Looking forward to hearing from you soon…