What inspired you to beat debt?


Hello All,

I am looking for some inspiration to beat debt. For many years I have been trying to find practical ways to lower it.

Is there any debt stories that you can inspire others including myself?


Hey Side Money Nation,

I’m currently working to beat my debt, and it really comes down to wanting to own my future.

Each month money is REQUIRED to come from my bank accounts to the loans and debts I have. My biggest being student loans, which were worth the investment. I’d prefer to use that money going to the loan for personal investments like money into our blog instead of to the loan provider. Being in control of my life puts me on the right path to achieve the goals I’ve outlined for myself, that will eventually lead me to say on my deathbed “I’ve lived the life I wanted, with the people I loved, and did one helluva a job doing so!”

Debt prevents me from doing that to my full potential.

Secondly, not paying off debt means that I will be paying those dog on loan providers even more money. Screw that! I’m motivated against paying anymore money than I have to.

Paying off debt is certainly a sacrifice, and others can help inspire you, but honestly you will only make the required sacrifices and that requires you to determine the big reasons on why. Without the why, the motivation won’t be quite as passionate for you.

Hope this helps and I hope that you find your why, because it makes life’s chessboard become one where you have a strategy in place to win it!


Hey SMN,

Great question. One of the things that kept me going during our very long debt payoff journey was to calculate how much money I was sending to the bank each month. It really bothered me to watch how much of our paycheck was evaporating to the banking community.

Hopefully this post provides a little motivation for you on your journey.


At this point in my financial life, my money strategy is simple: kill debt to build wealth. My main focus right now is eliminating all consumer debts. I have a couple payments left on my car loan and two personal loans. After knocking those out, I will focus on knocking out my $6,000 in student loans.

Knocking out these loans will allow me to increase my cash flow. Having an increased cash flow will allow me to save and invest more. Being able to save an invest more money, will increase my chances of becoming wealthy!


The near death of my husband when I was 31. It made me determined to get rid of all debt. When things go wrong, debt is just one more thing you don’t want to have to worry about.


I side hustled and lived with my parents until my student loans were all paid back.


I had a moment of clarity that I was dead broke. I did not want to be that person any more. It was less about money and more about the person I did not want to be. I wrote up my debt story over a couple of posts.

Debt is normalized but that fact is you are broke. I did not want to be a broke person.


Hey Charlie,

Not sure if you’re still looking for motivation, but for us, it came when we had our son and wanted to spend more time with him but instead had to go to work because we had bills to pay. At the time, our minimum debt payments totaled ~$2500/month. We’ve been working on paying off our debt and also decided to pursue FI so that we can be more in control of our lives.

I agree with others that you have to define your “why” yourself. We can tell you all day about how great it is to pay off debt and why we’re doing/did it, but until you have a personal motivator, you probably won’t take action.

Good luck! Please come back and let us know what you decide.


I wrote about debt on my latest post. I was always very conservative


I was already about $200k in debt (including the mortgage) and was sitting in a bank to take out a home equity loan to fix two broken bathroooms in our home.

It was one of those moments where I had clarity come over me and realized I could either keep going down this path or turn things around and get off the debt treadmill.

I started reading about paying off debt, real estate, and financial independence. That was in 2011.

In about four months we will be completely debt free including the morgage. I can’t tell you how much weight has already been lifted off our shoulders.

So what inspired us to pay off debt? To be able to live a better life full of more choices and less stress. It has totally been worth any sacrifices we’ve made along the way.


Congratulations! Completely agree about the weight being lifted as you pay everything off.


My inspiration is from a few factors:

When you don’t have debt, what you have is yours and nobody can take it away from you.

When no debt comes more freedom to do what you want with your money.

Being debt free opens more opportunities for you. For example, with a debt payment, maybe starting your own company is too risky, but with reduced cash obligations, you can make a go of it and give yourself the potential to be wildly successful.


I agree that it’s best to put your money towards loans. What are some of your strategies?


wow…I’ve read your article. Very motivating!


The strategy I’ve been currently using is called loan pooling.

Instead of paying extra on the loan, I’ve put money in a savings account. Once that savings account has a pool big enough to pay off the full loan, pay off I will :).

The main reason for doing this is safety, because until the cash flow of paying off the loan starts hitting my bank account, I don’t want to pay money that is lost down the rabbit hole. I decided the safety of having that money saved in case of a real emergency (unlikely but still there) was more important to me than saving money by making extra payments on the loan.

My schedule was only 1-3 years, so based on doing some amortization calculations, the 2-3 grand I’d lose with keeping that peace of mind for emergencies was worth it to me.

I started with that strategy above, but decided to change it up a bit once having a huge emergency fund later. The change up was to split that extra money, half saved into bank account and half extra on the loan. Best of both worlds !


Repaying loans aren’t very easy at all. The borrower needs to have a vivid picture of his entire financial situation right before him . It helps him opt for the right repayment plan. Gauging his financial strength is of utmost importance as he needs to follow the repayment plan till the entire loan amount gets paid off!