Gravity has its effect on each of us. Physical gravity keeps us from floating off into space and keeps our atmosphere secured to the earth. Social gravity binds us to our friends, families, jobs, churches, and communities. Psychological gravity binds us to habits (good and bad), commitments, and areas of our lives where we “feel comfortable.”
Debt has its own type of gravity and the closer you are to it, the stronger its pull on your finances and your psyche. It’s just so hard to break away.
When a rocket launches, fully 80 to 90 percent of its fuel is used to overcome the force of gravity. When I was working to escape the gravity of high interest debt, the hardest part was getting started. Most of my cash, my time, and my self discipline was used to overcome the massive gravitational pull of debt.
In some ways, I’m still in orbit, floating around my little planet of debt – I still have a mortgage and I still have a small student loan. But I’m working on getting even farther away from both of those and every blast of my cash thrusters propels me farther from that gravitational pull.
The same will hold true for you. Most of your energy will be used in getting things underway, getting to that state of semi-weightlessness where you can relax and know the freedom that comes from escaping gravity. But most people quit just before they get to that stage. Things get too hard, the car needs a new transmission, the air conditioner goes out, the roof has to be replaced, or some other catastrophic event pops up that costs more than the $1,000 that’s saved in their fledgling emergency fund.
Don’t give up! Your personal persistence will help you eventually overcome debt’s gravitational pull and before long, making financial decisions that don’t involve going into debt will become second nature and you’ll be one of the few who can focus their energies and efforts on your passion, your social network, or whatever motivates you. At that point, no one can pull you down.
Photo by nasa1fan/MSFC