Getting rid of your debts can be a long and arduous process. Once you get trapped in the cycle, it is difficult to get out of. You get into debt, and then get yourself further into debt in an attempt to pay the first one off. Before you know it, you’ve got credit cards and loans just about everyone and what was once one manageable sized debt is now lots of unmanageable ones. It could be handy to talk to companies similar to to bring those debts all into one manageable payment. It worked for my friend and she is so much happier.

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There are ways out of it though if you are frugal, motivated and self-disciplined. It is going to take some hard work and sacrifices, but if you really want to do it, you can. Are you ready?

Let’s focus on credit cards and store cards for now. You have run up some big bills on them, and now you’re struggling with the minimum balance every month, let alone the added interest and charges, right?

Cut them up.

That’s right. Cut all those credit cards up. Cut those store cards up. If they are in pieces in the trash, you can’t use them.

Now, you’re not racking up any more debts on them. We’ve just got to find a way of paying them off now. You have got two ways of doing this: increase your income or cut your outgoings.

Increasing your income is in the easiest regarding it not meaning any significant life changes, but it’s also a lot more difficult to suddenly add an extra few hundred dollars to your paycheck every month. Unless you get a new, better-paid job or ask your boss for a rise, you’re going to need to get creative.

Do you have anything lying around the house or apartment that you could sell? Craigslist. Facebook marketplace and eBay are excellent places to get rid of unwanted belongings, bringing you in a bit of extra cash and making some more space in your home at the same time. You could also have a yard or garage sale. Whatever you make from selling stuff, use towards reducing those debts.

You could also look at other side hustles to bring in extra cash. That might be advertising your babysitting/tutoring skills, taking in a lodger or roommate if you have space, or take on some freelance work.

Cutting your outgoings is the other option. If you can walk to work or school instead of catching the bus or jumping in that Uber do it. Take a packed lunch to work with you and a flask of coffee instead of spending $10 at Starbucks every day. Look at all the subscriptions going out – do you watch Netflix enough to spend money on it every month, or do you read that magazine enough to warrant that subscription?

Once you have cleared your debt, it’s perfectly fine to take out another credit card. They’re ideal for emergencies, and if used sensibly, they can help you to build your credit score. The key is using them wisely – not to buy that ridiculously expensive pair of shoes that you can’t afford. If you are thinking of taking another one out, here is how to find the right credit card for you.