Why Paying Off Debt Should Be a Family Affair
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Does a family who pays together stay together? Paying off debt can be a difficult process. If your family is willing to stick it out with you throughout the journey, your bond is bound to be stronger and your chances of paying off your debt once and for all should increase.
It’s harder to pay off debt solo let alone reach any goal you set without the help and encouragement from others. Money can be a touchy subject and I get that it can seem easier to gloss over your financial situation and keep your money problems to yourself so as not to worry or bother anyone else.
I understand not wanting to be as vulnerable with strangers, but if you can’t be completely open and honest with your family about your debt, who can you open up to and rely on? If you’re facing a mountain of debt right now, your best bet is to lean on your family to help you through the trying times.
Here are just a few benefits of involving your entire household in your debt payoff journey.
Added Support and Accountability
The support from your family will be a huge benefit while paying off your debt, especially on the days when you just want to throw in the towel. It’s hard to be 100 percent dedicated all the time as setbacks are always bound to pop up but if your partner, parents, kids, etc. are constantly supporting and motivating you, it will be much easier to stay on track with debt payoff.
Being held accountable is also a big benefit since you’ll know you’ll have to answer to someone else regularly regarding your progress. You can hold weekly or monthly meetings with your family to discuss your debt payoff progress and new ideas and strategies you’d like to try out.
Sometimes the accountability will kick in when you least expect it. This isn’t a debt related example but I definitely think it applies here. A few weeks ago, I joined a 45-day health challenge where I agreed to exercise more and eat better to improve my health in the 45-day period.
I told my 7-year-old son about the challenge and how I wanted to be healthier and then thought nothing of it. One of my biggest diet downfalls has always been eating too many sweet and sugary snacks and candy.
One day when we were walking into Walgreens, I slowed down by the candy aisle to see what they had available. I was quickly becoming tempted to indulge like I always have in the past. However, I heard a little voice behind me and realized it was my son. He said, “Hey, remember your challenge mommy.”
Being called out by my own child was really eye opening. I told him he was right and kept walking. I realized that day that I needed my entire family’s support if I wanted to reach my goal.
The Opportunity to Learn About More Solutions
The saying that two heads are better than one is so true. When you involve your family in the debt payoff process, you can put your heads together and come up with new solutions that you wouldn’t have considered alone.
Last year, my husband expressed his desire to pay off his car loan early. Since I am good at finding quality side hustle opportunities, I recommended a few. Some of the opportunities didn’t turn out well when my husband tried them but I kept recommending ideas and finally told him about driving for Uber.
Uber drivers also get paid weekly so each week he receives a payment via direct deposit and throws a portion of it toward his car loan and the rest goes toward taxes. At this rate, we’re hoping to have his car paid off by June.
Feeling misunderstood while on your debt repayment journey is not a good feeling. Sometimes speaking up to your family members about what your plans and goals are can allow them to become more understanding and sensitive to your current needs. I tell most of my loved ones about my goal to become debt-free so they understand why I say no in certain situations.
If you have kids who are old enough to understand your goal of paying off your debt, be sure to tell them why you can’t spend money on certain things and why attacking debt is important. If you don’t sit down and explain these things to them, there’s no way they’ll understand why they can’t have the new iPhone or what a debt-free life can mean for the entire family.
How to Get Your Family On Board
If you want to experience the benefits of including your family in your debt payoff journey, the first step is getting them on board. You can convince your family to join your goal and actively support it by doing some of the following things.
- Openly explain the debt situation
- Make a realistic budget that suits everyone’s needs and interests
- Settle on a ‘why’ that everyone can relate to
- Celebrate successes together
- Brainstorm a game plan to bounce back from failures together
Ultimately, your family will be there during the ups and downs. While paying off debt isn’t always a pleasant experience, it allows you to learn so much and it’s an empowering experience worth sharing with your loved ones.
Do you agree that paying off debt should be a family affair? Why type of support have you received from your family during your debt payoff journey? Have you ever had family members hold you back from paying off debt?