1 week ago

Better Man

Day 25 Start a Debt

Day 25 Start a Debt Repayment Plan Since I’ve graduated law school, I’ve been taking a look at the debt Kate and I have accumulated during our time in school. And it isn’t pretty. I hate debt. I hate the feeling of owing another person money. I hate thinking, “Oh good, I have ‘X’ amount in savings!” and then realizing that when I take into account how much debt I have, I actually have nothing to my name. Some debt is necessary for getting ahead in life and building a future. But there are few things more emasculating than excessive debt. A man should strive to be as self-reliant as possible. To be able to stand on his own two feet. To be able to plan for the future without being hobbled by the past. To be free from the shackles of dependencies. To live without another man looking over his shoulder. Debt robs you of these things. The interest from your debt is your captor, shadowing you wherever you go: “Interest [on debt] never sleeps nor sickens nor dies; it never goes to the hospital; it works on Sundays and holidays; it never takes a vacation; it never visits nor travels; it takes no pleasure; it is never laid off work nor discharged from employment; it never works on reduced hours. … Once in debt, interest is your companion every minute of the day and night; you cannot shun it or slip away from it; you cannot dismiss it; it yields neither to entreaties, demands, or orders; and whenever you get in its way or cross its course or fail to meet its demands, it crushes you.” —J. Reuben Clark Jr. Over the past 10 years, people have had a pretty lackadaisical attitude about their finances, thinking that the economy would keep pace with their debt. The recession burst this bubble of fantasy. The average American fam-

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