According to the 2015 report by Pew Charitable Trusts, over 80% of Americans are in debt.
Patrice Washington, the author of Real Money Answers for Every Woman, states that we tell ourselves lies about money that could be contributing to our debt.
She also states that wealth has nothing to do with money. Being able to get out of debt, starting a business, or reaching some other type of financial goal has to do with you and your mindset.
Below are four common money lies that may be keeping you in debt.
1. I know nothing about money.
Washington says this is a lie that she does not believe. There is so much information about money in the age of Google that there are no real excuses for any of us.
Not all financial information may be good, but the “I know nothing about…” lie is basically based on analysis paralysis caused by an overwhelming number of options rather than faulty information. People can get caught up in comparing every single principle for finances, but there are actually people who do not know as much as you do who are making progress by taking one small step at a time.
There is no one asking you to be a maven, you do not have to know everything there is to know. So what can you do? Just go and do it. The more you learn, the more you benefit from that thing, and the doors will continue to open, and more opportunities will arise for you to earn more money.
How you manage your money is how you get life experience. It determines where you live, what you drive, what you eat, and even how you dress. It deserves your full attention whether you want it to or not.
2. I work hard, and so I deserve it.
Nobody is saying that you do not work hard, or that you do not deserve any treats. The root of this lie is much deeper. Why do you need a reward?
There are plenty of times that there is a lack of fulfillment whenever it comes to your job or career, and it is easy to just justify why you want to purchase something to make yourself happier. The real problem is that you are unfulfilled. Instead of making excuses each payday, month, or year, it is time to ask yourself what is going on. Maybe the truth is that you are working really hard at something that you just do not enjoy doing and you need to make a shift.
3. It is an emergency.
The definition of an emergency is an unexpected and dangerous situation that calls for immediate action.
That comes down to something that is dangerous and serious, as well as unexpected. Whenever someone says he had an emergency, like his car registration was due, you know that as an adult with a car you have to register it each year. That is not an emergency.
There are actual emergencies such as losing a job, but most of what people consider to be emergencies are something one could have planned ahead for. You should be big on knowing your numbers. It is not just what goes in and out monthly, but costs like monthly subscriptions that you can plan ahead for.
4. I got it on sale.
When people say this, the issue is not that you got 50% off, it is the 50% that you paid for something that you do not really need.
If you happen to be in debt and do not have any money saved, it does not really matter if it is on sale or not. If it was not a need or an investment for your professional or personal development, then you are just lying to yourself. You did not need it. That is money that could have been used to pay your debts or save for your kids’ education, or to pay off your home, or anything else.
[Featured image credit: Katarzyna Bialasiewicz via Getty Images / Image cropped]