By Christ Church Communications Team
Brittany Charles (Contributor)
Brittany has always been ambitious, focused, goal-oriented and achievement-minded. Having a career, getting married, buying a home and starting a family were just a few of the goals she wanted to attain. However, while in college, the thought of financial goals was not one of them. She could attest to the fact that signing student loans, filling out credit card applications, not fully understanding interest rates and basic financial management techniques were the furthest thing on her mind.
It all came at once: the great financial recession of 2008, graduating from college, then resorting to a job that was not even close to what she wanted. The worst part was having $39,700 of combined debt, which consisted of $18,000 in student loans and $21,700 of consumer debt. While perusing the bookstore, she came across Dave Ramsey’s book, The Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness. After reading the first few pages, it was like a lightbulb went off in her head, and she knew that setting the financial goal to pay off her debts had to be a priority.
Brittany decided to write her financial goals on paper, and that became her motivation. She drew a big, audacious goal of paying off $39,700 of debt in only eight months, and some of her friends thought the idea was crazy! Some even doubted that she could even accomplish it at all, but that only put fuel in her soul.
It wasn’t easy, but she persisted—driven by hearing many positive testimonials of people who accomplished their goals thanks to eliminating personal debt. Brittany was faithful in practicing the principles she learned from Ramsey’s book: zero-based budgeting, the debt snowball and cutting back on everything from eating out, taking trips and paying for lawn care.
After two months, she decided to give her friends an update on her progress in meeting her financial goal. Brittany’s friends were so impressed that they started to ask her for financial advice! She was so energized and motivated to accomplish her goal that she decided to start her financial blog on Instagram called @mrs.fiscallyresponsible.
The blog took off with weekly posts of her financial progress, encouraging words for others and sharing her financial techniques. Today, it’s still growing and she has over 7,000 followers.
It’s been over 10 years since graduating from college, and her financial journey has been a satisfying one. Brittany and her husband Sam are enjoying the rewarding benefits of a debt-free life—like increasing their capacity to give generously—after eliminating almost $40,000 in debt.
You already have everything it takes to make changes to your financial situation.
Brittany Charles, Financial Coach
Brittany attributes their financial success to setting a goal, writing it down, getting around like-minded people and not allowing discouragement to set in. Brittany jokingly admits that once you begin to tell every one of your goals, there is no turning back—you must accomplish them—just to prove that you can.