There are only a few days left in 2011, and it was quite the year for me. I did a lot of traveling, did a lot of writing, lots of interaction with the yakezie and even my first blog conference. I’d like to go back and look at how I started the year and how I finished the year (just like last year) to give everyone hope that debt repayment is possible and one reason I think you should focus on it: freedom. Unfortunately, I didnt pay off as much debt as I did last year, but I was able to thoroughly enjoy the fruits of my labor from last year. I had more cash flow, and I participated in quite a few weddings and bachelor parties, all out of state. I didn’t have to say no to any of my good friends when they asked me to stand with them at their weddings or just asked me to attend because I “couldnt afford it”. That in and of itself was awesome.
Along with all the travel this year, I also got engaged to an awesome woman and someone that I’m excited to share my life with. I got a new job so that I didn’t have to drive 100+ miles every day to and from work, and while the savings in dollars didn’t materialize right away, I do enjoy having a 7 minute commute instead of having a 50 minute one (though it sucks when it’s cold out). Along with all of those, I did tons of work toward finishing my masters, and it should be officially done by May, 2012 – 3 years after I was supposed to be done, and 5 years after I started in the fall of 2007. Better late than never? I kept up with my goals for the year 2011 as best I could, and didn’t really totally fail at anything. Though my spending got off track for a while, it was because I was taking money that would normally be used for debt repayment and spending it on something that I enjoy (spending time with friends and traveling) – which is more than OK with me. Even though I would have liked to be totally out of debt before I did this, I didn’t add any new debt, so that’s all that matters.
At the beginning of 2011, I had debts from 2 student loans and 1 vehicle loan, totaling $33,854(!!!) broken down as follows:
- Truck Loan: $17,695
- Student Loans (2): $16,158
- Truck Loan: $9,466
- Student Loan (only 1 left): $11,359