I may just go ahead and use those for motivation. And Jan, I think your idea of posting your snowball right to your phone, so that you can see how much that eat-out money would have contributed to the debt payoff, is absolutely brilliant. Wicked, but brilliant.
I have to admit, when I realized that I’d really have to hustle to become debt free by my 50th birthday, I went through several days of “this really STINKS!” I did it entirely to myself, no question. And somewhere in my brain I knew how that compound interest worked. And paying off a few of the smaller debts in 2012 was a great start. But somehow, doing the debt snowball and seeing how far out that date was, was just so depressing. I have wanted to do something “special” for my 50th for quite awhile now, but something along the lines of going back to school, or starting some major new project, or going on a fantasy trip somewhere. Knowing now that all my efforts will be used between now and then to pay down debt that I racked up along the line? Still makes me sick to my stomach just thinking about it.
If there’s a silver lining here, it means the gloves are off this year in terms of cutting back on costs and spending. But folks might want to be ready for the psychological “hit” when they use that snowball calculator for the first time. Sure rang my little bell.