Build Relationships While Eliminating Debt

by Staff Writer on May 23, 2012

Remember your loved ones while you're eliminating debt.

A month ago I wrote a post titled The Sacrifice of Eliminating Debt. In it I detailed some of the sacrifice you need to make in order to blast away your debt.

I’ve been thinking a lot about it recently; especially in regards how it can effect the relationships you have with your family, your friends, and your co-workers.

Getting out of debt is a tough process, there is no other way to put it. But you can’t shut out the rest of your world while you reduce the strangle hold. I’ve done it and I’m realizing that I’m missing out out on life.

Yes, you still need to make sacrifices to reach your goals, but what good is reaching the goal if you have nobody to celebrate with?

These are two statements I made in my earlier post. I still believe they are true, but are in need of some further considerations.

Family: There will certainly be some sacrifice in terms of your family. Does your spouse have to go back to work to make extra money to eliminate the debt? Is a second job in your future? Are you ready to miss a family events because you have to work to supplement your debt elimination plan? These are some VERY important questions to think about when starting the process.

Friends: Can you say “no” to going out with friends? There are many ways to continue your friendships that don’t involve money. Keep up with friends on Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, E-mail, Text messages, Phone calls. Let all your friends know about your new mission and I bet some are in the same position. Talking with friends about money and the battles you face is a great way to get support for you efforts.

 

Family
Eliminating debt really does take a lot of time away from your family (assuming you are working extra to pay it down). Being away puts stress on your spouse, kids, and even your pets. It also puts a lot of stress on the person working the long hours; fatigue, remorse, sadness are just some of the stresses.

These are a few ways to make time to build my relationships with your family.

  • Schedule time with your spouse. Block out time to watch your favorite show together, DVRs make this easy. Have the Grandparents watch the kids every other week for a few hours so you can have “date night”. Call your spouse everyday to say “I love you.” Eat dinner together as much a possible and talk about life, NOT WORK. Talk about your dreams together as you settle into bed together. Hug each other as much as possible.
  • Schedule time with your kids. Set up a schedule with each child. Take the time to go for a walk with them. Play with legos or dolls with them. Read to them as much as possible. Give all the hugs and kisses you can. Take pictures together. Take them to the mall and just walk around. Attend their sporting events. Text them just to say “Hi”. Having little kids; I love to give them a bath, and to color with them.
  • Keep up with the Extended Family. Call your Mom and Dad just to say “Hi.” You can do this on your way home from work (using a hands free device of course.) Invite them over to watch the Grand kids (the 2 birds 1 stone method.) Send them the pictures you’ve taken with the kids. Do your best to attend the family events. Call the rest of the family and make sure to get the scoop and everything.

Friends and Co-workers

  • Engage People. Talk with your friends and co-workers. Ask about their families. Ask about how their weekends was. Look at the family pictures they are dying to show you.
  • Volunteer. Volunteering can be a very fun way to get involved, and doesn’t have to take a lot of time. The holiday season is here, signing up to bring a dish to the holiday party is a cheap and simple way to get involved. Participate in any charity fund raising going on at work. I had the pleasure to be a guest cook to help our Breast Cancer fundraiser. Look at the picture, sure looks fun to me. It took an hour out of my day, but I raised $100 in tips for Breast Cancer. guestgrillerWe are also doing a Toys For Tots drive at work. I save up all my bottles and donate them. The money is used to buy some very nice toys for the kids. We raised over $10,000 by doing this. Just look at the amount of toys you can buy…

toy4tots1

Keep blasting that debt away!! Just remember you still need to have a life. As I stated earlier, what fun is being debt free if you’ve got nobody to celebrate with.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Bobby December 9, 2009 at 1:35 pm

There’s a fine equilibrium to be struck between paying down debt and other important non-financial considerations (family, friends). Great reminder.

Reply

Jeffrey Kosola December 9, 2009 at 3:07 pm

Yeah, I’m even thinking of adding a “friends” reminder to my google calendar so every other day I’m reminded to make the effort to keep up the relationships I have.

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Indian Thoughts January 4, 2010 at 2:07 am

Hi,
I found you thru other blog where you were featured. Sorry forget exact blog. :(

First of all, I must praise that you really chose a beautiful photograph for this post.

And you are right, when one is dealing with financial issues, it happens that we tend to ignore other pursuits. And sooner then later one realizes the key to succeed in any financial goal is manitaining balance.

Wish you all d best in your journey to be debt free.
.-= Indian Thoughts´s last blog ..How I Spend first day of 2010 =-.

Reply

Jeffrey Kosola January 4, 2010 at 10:29 am

Thanks for finding me :-)

I look forward to reading your blog as well. Are you in India? I just looked at the pictures on your site, VERY cool.

Reply

DebT July 19, 2010 at 7:31 pm

What an excellent and well-balanced article. It is important to make the important considerations you speak about here. You can’t sacrifice family and friends to pay down your debt.

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TB at BlueCollarWorkman May 25, 2012 at 9:17 am

Couldn’t agree more, man. Getting out of debt is something you do for yourself and for your family, so it makes no sense to sacrifice your relationship with your family to do it!

Reply

"Tom" May 26, 2012 at 10:59 am

Such a brilliant article to say the least. Debt is a curse which maligns relationship. So at any cost it’s removal shouldn’t be the reason behind going away from your family. At the end of the day it can bind relationship, not break it off. So from that perspective your content will surely make people realize the strength of having a family and the urge of keeping it unaffected throughout the procedure of debt removal.

Reply

terrance September 16, 2013 at 2:04 pm

I have a tough time committing to reducing expenses. I really don’t spend that much and i really hate to go without certain things that i enjoy each month.

I like to concentrate on generating more income, instead of focusing on spending a little less each month.
But, I think it depends on what type of work you do. Sometimes i feel that i just need to work harder and improve my business instead.

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