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10 Steps to Paying Off Credit Card Debt

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8 of 10

Cut Up Your Credit Cards (or Make Them Inaccessible)
frozen credit card debt

One technique for reducing credit card debt suggested by financial planners is to freeze your cards in blocks of ice, helping you avoid the temptation of non-essential purchases.

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Years ago, a financial planner told clients to freeze their credit cards in blocks of ice. When they were tempted to spend, they would be forced to melt the ice, giving them time to rethink impulse purchases. An even better solution is to cut up your cards entirely so that you can’t charge anything else to them. What good does it do to plug holes in your ship in you are constantly drilling new ones in the side?

“But I can’t pay my bills without a credit card! That means I don’t eat.” This may sound harsh, but I got news for you: You’re not paying your bills. The credit card is merely allowing you to postpone the day of reckoning and helping to ensure that when it does come, it will be much worse. If you're right, you will almost certainly qualify for free food assistance in your state (if you don’t, move to a state where you do – seriously). In some states, you can get up to $300 or $400 per month in tax-free food money on a debit card. If you don’t qualify, then you have a spending problem and you’re still making excuses (go back to step 1).

If you still say you can’t make due: bull crap. Again, sorry, but it’s true. When I was in my early twenties, I moved to the Midwest so I could pay $180 for my half of the monthly rent for an apartment I split with my best friend. At the time, I had a six-figure investment portfolio and virtually no debt. My goal was to build my wealth at that stage. Was it enjoyable? Not necessarily. But I wanted something very few people achieve – complete financial independence. My younger brother slept on an air mattress for two years so that he had saved more than $50,000 by the time he left the Air Force at 24 years old. If I can do it, and he can do it, then there is absolutely no reason you can do it. If you need help getting started, read How to Become Wealthy.

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