Someone close to me recently asked me why becoming debt free is so important to me. I stumbled through an answer about how sick I am of making payments, of wanting to just be done, but the answers fell flat
But after this conversation, I started a list of why paying off my student loans is so important to me, why I’ve taken the challenge to get rid of them by the end of 2015 (only four years after I graduated). The list was an odd compilation of words like travel, horses and saving on interest.
But I realized, looking at my lengthy list, that everything boiled down to one thing: Freedom.
Right now, I’m stuck in a space where I have to earn a certain amount of money no matter where I live, what I eat, how much I drive because I have to pay on my loans. Every. Single. Month.
If I get laid off or contract some crazy disease and can no longer work, I still have to scrounge up cash for those loans.
I don’t have the choice to take an extended leave from work, travel the world or take riding lessons.
What do I want more?
That’s a question I ask myself a lot. It’s early in the morning, and a caramel latte sounds amazing. But what do I want more: Starbucks or freedom?
And if I can ask myself that question and not get sucked into what I want in this moment, I can take the tiny steps to work toward a giant, crazy goal of freedom.
That’s why I do it. That’s why it’s important to me. That’s why, fail or succeed in my 2015 goal, I’ll try my hardest. Maybe I won’t make it; maybe it will end up easier than I think it will. Either way, trying will get me closer than I would if I didn’t try at all.