Are you letting your debt stop you?

 Image via Creative Commons

Image via Creative Commons

I'm often thinking of new ideas/inventions to work on, new businesses to start or advise, and countless other "new things" to do. This habit of mine is one my favorites and I'm convinced it's a big part of what I'm passionate about.

It's a great activity, but the other half of my passion lies with actually bringing these ideas from thoughts into action. Thoughts are great, but action is better.

In an ideal world, I would be working with people to create awesome stuff all the time.

The thing that is keeping the real world and the ideal world separate is...money. It's not about having millions of dollars to throw at a problem, it's about having freedom from financial responsibilities to dedicate time to this cause.

We all have financial responsibilities and some of them are obviously very important. We need to eat, have a place to stay, clothe ourselves, and take care of our bodies and our loved ones. All of these cost money and we can't just up and quit our jobs.

A lot of people, myself included, have saddled themselves with financial burdens (debt) that can prevent them from doing what they love. It could be a house with a mortgage, student loans, credit cards, car payments, or a combination of these.

Every time we take on more debt, we should be thinking about what that obligation means, and what it will be keeping us from.

Will it mean we'll have to work more hours doing what we hate, instead of relaxing doing what we love?

Will it mean spending more time away from the people who mean the most to us to pay for the things that will be gone in a matter of months or even days?

For some people who want to be working their passions, all that's standing in their way is the need to pay for their lifestyle. They may know how and want to teach foreign language classes, but they know they won't be able to pay the mortgage for the mini-mansion they currently own doing that. So they keeping saying that they just can't make enough money doing what they want to do, when really it's that they can't afford to maintain their lifestyle and do what they want.

Some debt is unavoidable and not all debt is bad. But how much debt to take on and for what purpose are the choices we make that impact our happiness, whether we realize it or not.

How does debt affect your decisions?

- Ryan