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My Personal Finance Tipping Point

by The Happy Rock on June 11, 2008

mexican-hat-rock-tippingThis post is in response to Free From Broke’s tipping point contest.

For those that don’t know a The Tipping Point is a book and term coined by Malcom Gladwell in 2002. It refers to “the level at which the momentum for change becomes unstoppable.[1] The term was an attempt to quantify and understand what makes certain phenomenon and ideas take off. Why does an unknown book vault into the best seller list or a website like I Can Has CheezBurger go viral.

Click Here for the link to the book on Amazon and here for the book preview from Google.

It is a little bit of a stretch to apply this term to your own financial journey, but I think it really creates some thoughtful discussion. I like breaking your financial journey into two tipping point as FFB mentioned in the original article. One for when you reversed you financial direction and one when all the changes from tipping point one changed into unstoppable success.

The tipping point that changed my life around was when I began to realize that having debt was slavery. It wasn’t one moment that caused a switch, but a the convergence of multiple thoughts and personal development areas. As I pictured my life and where I wanted to go, I realized that having debt was a $70,000 weight. I couldn’t quit my job, because I had bills to pay. I couldn’t begin to entertain becoming an entrepreneur or or creating the family life I wanted. Debt was a hindrance to almost every dream/goal that I wanted to pursue. It had to go. I started listening to free Dave Ramsey shows on the internet, reading personal finance books, and I my life has not been the same. 5 years later, our debt except for a mortgage is gone, we have 6 months expenses in an emergency fund, adopted two children without needing debt, bought two cars with cash, and feel liberated and empowered to pursue our dreams.

I will discuss my success tipping point tomorrow.

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

FFB June 11, 2008 at 11:05 am

Wouldn’t it be great if all it took was a few dollars of debt for us to turn things around? Debt is slavery and it feels great to break free of it’s chains!

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pete June 11, 2008 at 11:15 pm

I agree about the debt=slavery comment. It really is slavery, it consumes your thoughts, it becomes the only thing you can think about. Once you get rid of the debt it is an awesome feeling – like you’re coming out of a dark cave into the bright sunlight!

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Gloria June 19, 2008 at 10:04 am

debt is the worst thing that can happen to me. You see I even can’t sleep at nights if I now I owe somebody. That is why I strive to get rid of any debt I have. Then my sleeping gets better :)

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The Loan Ranger July 28, 2008 at 1:06 pm

I have always felt that debt is a tool that can be used for one’s own benefit, but which can also cut your arm off if you don’t use it with caution. I know everyone else seems to be on board with thew hole debt=slavery thing, but I just thought I’d add my two cents.

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The Happy Rock July 28, 2008 at 4:07 pm

@Loan Ranger – The cutting your arm if is the problem. Years of hard work can be undone by one slip. Also having to deal with debt causes stress that takes your mind and energy that could be better invested elsewhere.

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