Category: Life Lessons

How To Pay Off Student Loans In A Year

Last May, I graduated the University of Nevada, Reno with a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing. As I walked across the stage I was handed my diploma and $27,000 of federal student loan debt.

Since it’s graduation season and many of my friends will be entering the business world on their own, I thought I would share how I paid off all of my student loans in one year!

destiny-with-diploma

Work Two Jobs, or Maybe Three

This may seem like the easiest piece of advice, but many students are not motivated enough to start working 60+ hours a week right after graduation. Many study abroad, work part time and take it easy the first summer. Unfortunately most student loans are already incurring interest while you’re taking it easy during summer. This is the only way to pay off your student loans…work, work a lot. Make a goal for yourself to commit one year to nonstop work so you can enjoy being debt free for life.

Don’t Vacation

Just stay still for at least one year. Have your friends come to you and don’t waist money on vacationing because guess what, you have so many jobs you probably can’t get the dates off anyway. Sure, one year can seem like a long time, but you will end up paying so much less in one year than you would if you did in 5 years or even 10. If it makes you feel better I took off a total of 1 full day in 6 months, that’s the kind of commitment it takes to pay off your student loans in a year.

Get a Mint Account

Go to Mint.com, get an account, link it to every account possible, and BUDGET. Pay your bills on time and don’t overspend. This takes self discipline, but hey, you got through 3 hour lecture classes, you can be in charge of your own bank account and your future.

Make Payments Weekly

The more often you can make payments on your loans, the better. If you can manage to pay some amount every week, this will save you small amounts, but every little bit helps.

Cut Memberships

Say bye-bye to Birch Box, Dropbox, Ipsy, Stichfix, Cosmopolitan and any other monthly subscription you have. Remember the goal and you will have something to look forward to this time next year.

Give The Gift Of Words

So you went to some fancy college and became educated, well now its time to use your eloquent vocabulary to write beautiful cards. This year, all presents will be made with paper and a pen. Save money on gifts and explain why you couldn’t splurge this year on Christmas, your true friends and family will understand and respect your determination (so long as you don’t buy anything new for yourself).

All of these things may seem like common knowledge but they are harder to implement than you think. I am so thankful to be done paying off my student loans and I feel so relieved to not have any debt hanging over me. And I must say, if Kyle and I can get married the same year we paid off $27,000 of my loans and $9,000 of his, you can do it!

Share some of your budget savvy tips on how to pay off student loans in a year in a comment below, I would love to hear them!

Staying Positive at Work

One of my biggest struggles at the moment is being a light to others at work. It is so easy to compartmentalize your life so that you ony have to be a Christian at church or to friends and family, but at work I find myself falling into the black hole of negativity and consistent complaining that doesn’t inspire others to accept God’s love.

Do you feel this way at work? That when you are putting in 40+ hours a week at a stressful job it is hard to keep sight of what matters most? I know I do, but I came across some great verses that have inspired me to change my attitude at work and I am happy to share them with you.

1. Psalms 51:10

“Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”

This verse reminds me it is never to late for God to renew your love for others and start fresh.

2. Ephesians 2:10

“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.”

This verse is so encouraging to me, that God created each of us to do his good things for others and has a plan for our lives.

3. Colossians 3:23

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ”

It is so easy to forget that we are not working for our boss, manager or department lead but instead everything we do is for God and to glorify him. I hope this encourages you to smile more often on Mondays. Even though I am writing this to keep myself accountable I am sure a few others could use the same encouragement.

Tips for the Budget Savy Bride

wedding-party-jumpingThis past August, I married the man of my dreams on a beautiful rainy day.

Our wedding was less than 15k for everything except my engagement ring. Wanna know how we did it? Check out my top tips for having your dream wedding at a price that doesn’t make you loose your mind, or your house.

1.  Buy as little as possible from stores in the wedding industry

2. Don’t waist money on fancy invites

3. Be open minded

4. Find a unique venue

5. DIY your life away

6. Use a florist when necessary

7. Use your connections

8. Ditch the open bar

9. Do a location wedding

10. Ebay, Amazon, and Thrift Stores are your new best friends.