Paying off debt is my passion. I love it when I see people take the step to start tackling their debt! But it can also be a very long process, and sometimes it is hard to keep that motivation up all the way to the end. That’s why you need to “treat yourself.”
It can take the average person anywhere from a few months to many years to pay off debt. And while you’re going super intense to pay it off as fast as possible, it’s easy to get burned out if you’re not careful.
What I want you to take away from this post is that it’s OK to treat yourself from time to time! You work hard for your money, and you should be able to reward yourself for that.
Rewards can come in many shapes and sizes. One of the biggest rewards you can give yourself is the gift of financial freedom, and a huge part of that is paying off debt.
But like I said earlier, the debt payoff journey can take a long time in some cases, and I want you to have some quick wins along the way. So how do you treat yourself while trying to pay off debt?
1.) Decide on a budget
Choose the amount you are comfortable with spending on your treat. If you have been on the debt payoff journey for any period of time, you may find it’s actually pretty difficult to spend money on yourself now. Try to fight past this feeling and give yourself a little wiggle room to pick something out that’s just for you.
If you’re looking for a basic starting point of what to budget for your treat, I would say somewhere in the $30 range. Feel free to adjust this number to your situation and your liking!
2.) Set a goal
If you are one of those people who feels guilty about spending any extra money or treating yourself, turn it into a reward for hitting a tough goal. I definitely encourage you to pick something fun to reward yourself when you pay off ALL your debt. I personally have my eye on a new Coach handbag (as silly as that may be!)
But it’s also totally acceptable to “treat yourself” as you hit milestones along the way. For example, every time you pay off a credit card you could go get your nails done (if it’s in the budget you set in the first step.) You could treat yourself to a new top, necklace, or lipstick. If you’re anything like me, a new book and a fun coffee mug would be a very motivating reward. Decide on your milestone–whether it’s every $1,000 you pay towards debt, every debt you knock out, etc. Then treat yourself when you hit it!
3.) Think outside of the box
Treating yourself does not have to be expensive. It doesn’t even have to cost any money at all! The key is to be creative and think outside of the box.
If you’re married, you could have a fun date night at home with your spouse. Learn how to give a basic massage, pick out your favorite movie, and lock yourselves away for a few hours.
One of my favorite ways to rejuvenate is to enjoy the outdoors. Find a quiet spot you can simply sit and enjoy the fresh air, go fishing, or take a bike ride.
There are many, many ways to treat yourself for free, the idea is to just start thinking about it. The gift of time alone can be a very rewarding one in itself!
Paying off debt, saving an emergency fund, or any other huge financial goal can take a lot of time and a lot of energy. Be sure to treat yourself along the way, and reward yourself for all your hard work. By deciding on a budget, setting a goal, and thinking outside the box, you can treat yourself without any guilt and keep your momentum up for the long haul!
Your turn: What is one creative way you’ve treated yourself before? Share your idea in the comments below!