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Never underestimate the brag factor

BY GREER MCDONALD
Last updated 10:17 21/01/2011

Exciting times today! Just this morning I paid off one of my personal loans that started off its life as a $3195 noose around my neck.

As per my normal monthly routine, a few hundred bucks automatically came off the loan when my pay went in on the 20th but when I saw that the balance was a mere $258.98, and with the encouragement of a lovely boyfriend who reminded me of how amazing it will feel to finish it once and for all, I rang the bank and asked them to pay the remainder off.

It's GONE! And it feels so, so good. Now there's just one loan left, with a balance of $2100.

Immediately after I hung up the phone, I jumped on to Twitter and gloated. I'm not ashamed to say that I needed to share this because people who follow me on Twitter are generally well aware of this blog and my goal to be more financially awesome.

So I tweeted:

 Twitter

I did this knowing the response I would get, or at least I hoped I would get: overwhelming support.

support

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That's just a tiiiiny selection of some of the responses I got - some from real life friends, some from strangers. This to me proves why I wanted to be so public about my financial situation; it's actually made me more accountable for what I do.

Some might stick their nose in the air and say I'm bragging and guess what: I am! I am damn proud of what I have achieved.

Even my bank got in on the act of support:

ASB support

 

 

 

So yeah, the brag factor is an added bonus; a sideline to the goal itself. I paid this debt off knowing I could give myself a virtual pat on the back and five minutes of feeling pretty chuffed about how far I'd come.

I've had such cool feedback, some people saying they wish they could focus more on their debt, others sharing the high they felt when they paid debt off.

For me, given that I spend so much time online, it's natural for me to turn to this community for support. Real life people are good too - colleagues and family have been great cheerleaders - but the onliners have been the loudest and most constant support. So to you tweeters and Facebook folk - and you all know who you are -THANK YOU.

Tell me, how do you celebrate financial goals? Do you have a support team that you turn to and keep you motivated?

Also, any tips on how to get over this final race to the finish. Just over $2000 to go and I'm in the clear, I think I'm going to start throwing money at that loan like it's going out of fashion! Time to gather up all those coins floating around...

***

Email me here if you have any burning questions you'd like to put to the blogosphere or to our financial personal trainers at enableMe? 

» You can follow Greer on Twitter or on Facebook.

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- Stuff

39 comments
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Rubarb   #1   10:24 am Jan 21 2011

Wow - that's fantastic...

It's just the motivation I need as I look at my $13,000 personal loan and think about making the big push to have no money for 2011... and hopefully no loan at the end of it too!!

Nice work Greer.. yay you!

AJ   #2   10:45 am Jan 21 2011

Congrats! I just paid off my overdraft this morning too, it feels so great! Think I'll keep the autopayments that went into it, but redirect it into my savings account.

Well done, Greer!

JeM   #3   10:46 am Jan 21 2011

Good on you and brag away I say! I'd be bloody stoked if I was out of debt too. Long way off for me though, but i'll get there!

Shelby   #4   10:55 am Jan 21 2011

CONGRATS!!!!! Tip to pay the last one off quicker, make the payments that you have been, but also increase them by the payment amount on the loan you have just paid off. Will halve the time that you pay it off!! and you havent had that money for a while now, so you wont miss it! Also make lump sums whenever you can. Good luck, and it wont take long!!

LB   #5   11:02 am Jan 21 2011

Congrats Greer! That's awesome. And you should be proud of it too!

Jarren Burns   #6   11:14 am Jan 21 2011

I have to admit, the last time I got debt free I celebrated by blowing $1000 on champagne and a happy ending. However, the hangover was more than made up for by the fact that I was debt free (excluding the $1000 I has put on my card the night before).

I would suggest you don't do the same. Maybe a nice steak dinner and a quiet film to toast to your own financial health would do the trick.

Hoo roo.

joe   #7   11:16 am Jan 21 2011

congrats, its like saying congrats to someone who got really fat and now is thin. Shouldn't have gotten fat in the first place.

BathTub   #8   11:31 am Jan 21 2011

Definitely time to update the banner then.

I have some idea of how you feel, it wasn't so long ago I had 2 maxed credit cards, now I have only 1 payment away to having both paid off in full. Feels fantastic, looking forward to next payday.

Sal   #9   11:34 am Jan 21 2011

Good on you!!! Now just put the spare dosh that was going to that loan into your final one, and in no time that one will be gone too. Then... saving time!

Off this particular topic, but on topic at the same time... Last week I had a quiet day at work and spent my spare time setting up a mega-spreadsheet (Excel geek that I am) with all my assets, debts, and cashflow. So I've got my predicted incomings and outgoings for the year, and can play with the figures to see things like - if I buy this now, how will this affect my finances in a year's time? Or, if I put X amount onto this loan, how much more quickly will it be cleared? Verrrry interesting I tell you. Even just plugging in my numbers from the last week I can see I've been thinking more about where my money's going. Highly recommend this! Even if you're not much of a numbers person, you can download awesome templates for free.

And another side note - you may be interested to know how many of us in the finance trade follow your blogs. It's a regular conversation topic over Friday drinks - the amount of insight we get into what people know, what they don't, and what they need from their bank is incredible. And go ASB, they're obviously making the most of having you onboard for a bit of free marketing!

Alex Wellington   #10   11:44 am Jan 21 2011

Greer, when I paid off my massive loan I had so much extra money to play with (the money that normally paid the loan). Put that and ANY extra money you can find on your $2k debt every pay for the next few months and you'll find it'll disappear faster than you can say "interest-bearing savings accounts! Woohhooooo!"


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