There nothing like the guilt and pressure you feel when you are behind on your bills. You become so deep in the hole and you wonder “How can you fix this! How can I catch up! I have been there before many of times, and most times it would make me feel so upset. One thing is the embarrassment you feel and the other just plain overwhelmed.
I want to tell you, you can do this!! Is it going to be hard, yes of course but think about the relief you will feel after. We all go through tough times and you have the strength to get from under that rock. I’m going to go over the steps you can start right now to catch up and get on track. As you do each one you will start to feel more in control of the situation.
But first things first…
Dwelling on what you CAN’T do will keep you from doing what you CAN
Make a List
You are struggling and making a list might not be something you want to do because you don’t have the funds. The List will get you organized so you can create a plan. Creating this list of what you owe, dates dues, late fee or interest applied is the first step. Don’t leave all of the worry replaying in your mind, this will only stress you out. Transfer all of that anxiety on paper (or digital), and see it for what it is.
Depending on what accounts or bills you are behind on some might be more important than others. The bills that you need to maintain your livelihood should be first to get current. The priority bills are Rent, Utilities, Transportation, and then past due Credit Cards, Loans and Debt. It is important that your bills are in order of that, then take care of the rest.
Create a Plan
After the list is complete, here comes the plan. First thing on your plan is to go on a spending freeze. I know you might not like this one. I’m sorry but if you are behind there is not need to add more things. In this case the credit card is on a pause as well. Write down the due dates of the bills or accounts that are pass due and give yourself a date to have them paid by. Try just paying the minimum on your credit card for the time being and don’t use it. It is always good to stay in communication with the company you owe the money too. If you just ignore them, they will just continue to bother you, at this rate you can just seem irresponsible. When you communicate with the creditors, explain to them the situation and see if they can give you a payment plan or some time to apply small amounts till it is paid off. The plan should also include what you can cut for the time being, maybe take a look at some subscriptions you can pause till you catch up. If you normally buy lunch, try bringing your own and avoid situations or areas that cause you to spend.
Earn more Money
At this point your expenses are outweighing your income, so that being said you need to increase it. There are two ways you can earn more income, one being selling stuff or picking up more work. There might be some things around the house that hold value that you don’t use or have more than one of. Tons of apps are out there for selling used stuff, one app you can try is Offerup. You can also sell your stuff online and on social media sites. The second thing is, getting more work. Try looking for stay at home jobs like surveys or write reviews on sites. If you can manage the time, see if you can pick up a small part time job on days off to quickly earn money. If all else fails there might be a favor you can do for someone to save them time in exchange for funds. The favor can be as small as babysitting , or helping someone move or changing the breaks on their car. I know you can be creative in this and come up with a lot of ways to earn extra income, just write down some ideas.
Now and can say you made a list, came up with a plan and made it work. I hope reading this encouraged you to think of more ideas and not feel like all is lost. We all go through struggles but that doesn’t mean we need to wait for it to pass. The bills will only pile up if you let them, tell yourself YOU GOT THIS!!! And make a goal to catch up.