My name is Jorge, I am not a finance expert, but I have been down the debt path and figured out how to not only to be debt free, but to also save money. In the past couple of years I’ve gone from spending impulsively, racking up debt and living paycheck to paycheck, to eliminating that debt and having a pretty decent amount in savings.
A couple of years ago, I found myself drowning in thousands of dollars of debt (mostly credit cards). I felt trapped. I knew this was not the way to start off my adult life and I had nobody to blame but myself.
I wish I could tell you that I was in debt because of my student bills, loans or heck…even a car loan—but I’d be lying. The sad truth is that pretty much all of my debt was due to me buying things online I definitely did not need.
Online shopping is what got me addicted to the internet in the first place. I remember being 14 and spending hours building up “wish lists” of items I wanted on different sites only to imagine what it be like to purchases my lists. Not surprisingly, when I finally did have a job (and an income), the first thing I did was create a Paypal account and I went on a 4 year shopping spree. I did not think of the consequences of my spending. I was too busy getting excited when I got home to find new packages at my doorstep. I was buying anything and everything. Even I thought some of the the stuff I was purchasing was crazy. Maybe later I’ll share a list just for fun on some of the junk that I bought over the years.
What Changed for me
Eventually, I became aware that my debt was piling up and I just kept making up excuses to stop spending and pay it off.
“Everyone has some form of debt”
“For me, this will be my only debt for a long time”
“I’ll pay it off later when I have a better job”
Noooo, I had to pay it back now!!!
Making the minimum payments on my credit cards was much easier.
I started reading stories on Yahoo Finance about how people were eliminating massive debt, paying of their homes, or just saving for retirement. It caught my attention because some of them used to be in the same scenarios that I was currently finding myself in. I branched out of Yahoo and found personal finance blogs written by normal, everyday people.
I would go back and read every single posts that bloggers had published. Reading personal success stories is what motivated me the most and pushed me to finally take action. If they could pay off their debts, why not me? These blogs were all the proof I needed. To follow someone over the course of weeks, even months as they accomplish their goals was pretty cool.
I “flipped” my daily habits from one day to the next. I stopped the online shopping completely cold turkey. It was easier than I thought it’d be (some of my friend thought I had an actual problem), you just don’t buy anything. Simple. I bookmarked all the pages to my credit cards and even though I still checked deal sites from time to time, whenever I saw something that caught my eye, I’d open up my card statements to see how far I’d come. This was motivation enough to not buy more things.
I started cutting corners wherever I could. I sold whatever I didn’t need on eBay and craigslist, eliminated expenses that were not essential, and even stopped going out for a while. I experiment with some online side hustles for extra money (most of them never worked out). A huge chunk of my income was going directly to paying off debts. It took some work but almost a year later, I finally reached my goal and paid all my debt. I cut all my credit cards except 1 for emergency purposes. The sense of fulfillment was amazing and it is what has kept me on track this whole time.
A little about myself…
I’m a geek at heart and love anything that has to do with technology. I read a lot, not books, but blogs and articles online. I enjoy reading about personal finance the most. It is a subject that everyone can relate to and something that all of us (for better or worse) have to manage. I am extremely shy but I love meeting new people (How?? I know right..). I have lived in California all of my life and love it. I enjoy the outdoors and nature but I’m also like being indoors. I am a big movie buff and watch a lot of TV shows. I love to eat and try different foods. I try to stay generally healthy and exercise regularly. I consider myself a car enthusiast and enjoy working on them. To me, the internet is the single greatest invention ever. It’s probably the one thing that I could not go without for a day.
When I started saving, personal blogs where the main motivator that pushed me to succeed in my goals. Without the personal success stories of finance bloggers I don’t think I would of ever taken action in the first place. I created this blog with the intention of sharing how I’ve faced my finance problems one at a time. You can learn from what I’ve done right and wrong. I’ll show you tips on how to “flip” your financial situation.
Join me on my personal financial journey from a daily, impulsive spender, to a frugal money saving machine.
Your personal finance is a story, and everyone has one to tell. This blog is my way of sharing mine with you. But enough about me. Tell me about yourself and your story, I would love to hear from you. Use the contact page and send me a message if you have any question or just to say hi.
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