7 Money Lies You Might Be Telling Yourself

Do any of these mindsets sound familiar? If so, you may want to rethink the way you approach your debt.

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Lots of people tell themselves lies to justify their procrastination when they fall into debt or splurge on shopping. That is until they stop in their tracks and face reality. Does that sound familiar? So what’s behind these common money lies you might be telling yourself? Well, it’s complicated.

Those who wake up and do something about their personal finance situation are more likely to bounce back on their feet promptly, improve their credit scores, and go on to have a beautifully prosperous life.

No matter how big or small your debt is, if you get a handle on it and follow through on your plan to pay it off fast, you’ll learn how to avoid the sting the next time around before it is too late. People with high debt volume have fully recovered thanks to the steps they’ve taken to move out and to follow the signs that say “financial freedom lies ahead.”

Here are some money lies people tell themselves. If you catch yourself in this mindset, be aware of how you can change your perspective and actions to your benefit.

1. It's okay to be in debt

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Whenever we purchase items we don’t need or go overboard buying things we can’t afford, there is this little voice inside us saying “it’s ok, people in debt is normal…everyone has debt.”

Alternatively, we justify purchases out of our means saying “everyone has it” and “everyone does it.” While lots more people are followers than leaders, you don’t have to be one of them.

In reality, only about half of credit card users have a debt balance. Credit cards 101 is paying the balance before the grace period ends to avoid finance charges.

2. You have to spend money to have fun memories

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Sure, we all want to have good memories to fall back on when we’re old. It’s great to take family vacations and be adventurous trying out new things in life for fun, like skydiving and traveling abroad.  It's what makes life worth living. We want to fill our loved ones with happy memories and good things.

However, if we don't learn to value and be satisfied with the simple things in life, spurts of fun aren't going to last, and you'll be miserable again after the one week vacation. As for our children's happiness, teaching them to value time together playing board games, throwing a ball in the backyard, or cooking together is more durable than spending a week in paradise island with them. You can live to the fullest without basing your life on dollars and cents.

3. I'm just not good with money

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This hang-up is nothing but a lie people tell themselves when they're afraid to learn something new that causes them anxiety.  The best way to deal with stress is to face your fears. Michelle Renz, a nurse from Auburndale, Wisconsin and a single mother of two, always lived paycheck to paycheck and had a hard time making ends meet after holidays when she incurred in debt to have a “normal” Christmas for her kids.  

Michelle dreaded the holiday season because her children would expect new clothes, toys like the other kids, new clothes and special celebration meals. So she would get into debt and sometimes couldn’t pay the debt off in time for the next holiday season. It was a revolving door that led to deeper and deeper debt.  Until one day when she decided to be proactive and made the decision to get out debt.

Michelle did what most people do, search on the web for programs that helped her manage and reduce her credit card debt. Once she found the best option for her situation, she followed through on the plan, and instead of getting into debt every holiday, she saved enough money during the year and purchased items that had significant sales mark-ups.  What is more, her children were inducted in the process, and they too became educated in financial wellness. Her advice to people who think they're not good with money is to “face your fears, find help, and choose an option that you can afford.  If you want to find credit card debt relief, it's simpler than you think.”

4. My children deserve a better life

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Similar to the example stated above, this is another myth that puts people into debt to keep up with the Jones.  Children will probably suffer a lot more if you don't put your eggs in a basket and wait for them to hatch. “Saving is a habit and living within one's means is an art,” says Lucas Montenegro, an accountant professional at Meryl Lynch in San Diego.  Wealthy people don't go around flaunting their fortune. On the contrary, they live below their means and have the financial freedom to invest in businesses their children can learn to manage and develop.

When they want to take a vacation or buy a costly piece of jewelry or celebrate big, they use their credit cards as a paying tool, so they don't have to take cash along. Credit Card relief options are never their problem since they don't get into debt.  If you really want to help your children teach them money sense, savings, and investments.  When you are old and have put away money for your retirement, your children will be happy you are not burdening them.

5. You have to have a good credit score

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If you plan on borrowing more money, good credit scores help you become eligible for lower interest rates on mortgages and auto loans. However, reputable creditors will work with you when you have no debt accumulated even if you don’t have good credit standing.

Once you lower your debt substantially or eliminate it, your credit scores will rise, and future loans will be offered at lower interest rates. Creditors will always give credit to clients with non-existent debts, but will not keep on crediting those who owe more than 30% of their total credit limit across accounts. It’s easy to build good credit scores when you don’t have debt.

6. You need a credit card to pay for online purchases and travel costs

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The only time you will need a credit card is when you are renting a car. For hotels, flight tickets, and online purchases all you need is a debit card. The debit card is international, you can pay for goods and services abroad, at restaurants, and hotels. Debit cards are backed up by Master Card and Visa; you can use a debit card anywhere these credit cards are accepted.

So, not only do you have access to points of sale in most modern-day places, but major finance companies also back you without incurring in debt. My family and I have traveled to many international locations using only our debit card and paying for things out of a checking account.

7. It's impossible to be debt free

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No matter how big your debt is, don't be discouraged, there is a solution to every problem. It's heartbreaking to see how many people drown in debt making high-interest payments for years on end, while in the meantime acquiring even more debt through credit cards. It's no small wonder credit card relief companies are in such high demand and profitable!

If you have tried to pay off your debt in the past and failed, keep your hopes up. Being debt-free is possible. Nothing will work unless you think positively. When you think you can, you will, but when you think you can't, you won't. No matter how many books and articles you read on the subject of becoming debt-free. No matter how many workshops and seminars you attend looking for ways to grow debt free and live a prosperous life, nothing will work unless you have that one piece of mental acuity called hope.  However, faith starts when you start being deaf ears to lies.

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About the author

Brian Meiggs
Brian Meiggs is a personal finance expert, and the founder of My Millennial Guide, a personal finance site helping you unlock the wealth of freedom. He helps millennials follow the smart money in order to increase their earning potential and start building wealth for the future. He regularly writes about side hustles, investing, and general personal finance topics aimed to help anyone earn more, pay off debt, and reach financial freedom. He has been quoted as a top personal finance blogger in major publications including Business Insider, Yahoo! Finance, NASDAQ, Discover, Fox News, MSN Money and more.

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