It’s hard to get people talking in the August, that’s why I haven’t published any blitz interviews in the last 1-2 months. But now the silly season is over and I am back with a nice one. This time my guest is a girl again – Tricia from Blogging Away Debt. Sweet, I like girls because they talk more *grin*.
Her blog is focused mostly on avoiding debt, saving and frugality. Let’s hear what she has to say:
SI: What’s working better for you in reducing your debt – saving money by being frugal or earning more by working more? And how would you prefer to continue – would you trade your free time for more money (working for alternative income) or you would prefer to keep the frugal lifestyle until you get out of debt?
Tricia: I believe that it is important to do both in order to really kick debt reduction into high gear. For a while there, we were cutting expenses and we were bringing in more money. We were paying hundreds of dollars extra towards our debt a month. But then our income decreased and our debt reduction rate slowed down.
After our debt is paid off, we will look for ways to increase our income and will keep our frugal lifestyle. It’s interesting because we have been transitioning to a life with less stuff and it feels great. We are heading towards a life of simplicity.
SI Note: She doesn’t say which is better. Probably any option is fine if you are committed to your goals. One advantage of making more money is that it is not limited in theory – while saving is limited to the amount that you earn (and that only if you learn photosynthesis).
SI: Has blogging helped you in any way to improve your financial situation?
Tricia: Very much so. I do run advertising on my blog so that brings in a few hundred dollars a month as side income. So when you look at it from a monetary standpoint – it has helped. But even more importantly, it has helped to keep me motivated. I don’t know how this happens, but when I am feeling down I usually get an email or a comment that lifts my spirits. Without blogging about our debt, I know I wouldn’t have been as focused on our debt reduction as I have been. It still boggles my mind that we have been at this for two and a half years. I’m not usually one to keep at things for that long, so blogging has definitely helped there as well. My readers are wonderful 🙂
SI Note: Oh thanks, we know we are wonderful 😀 So here is one more use of blogging except making money – to keep you motivated. When you share your goals with others, you become a lot more responsible in following them.
SI: Did you learn something from the failed business venture that you mention here? Would you try again or do you think people should not take such risks?
Actually, we are starting a new business and taking another risk. However, we have learned so much from the first failed venture. We weren’t really passionate about that business. We saw it as a means to be our own bosses and we didn’t really think things through. Everything you read says you should have a business plan. Believe it! We didn’t have our ducks in a row and the first business didn’t even get off the ground.
This new business venture is different. We are both passionate about it and it combines the talents of my husband and myself very well. It has very low start-up costs (unlike the first business). And most importantly, we have a solid business plan.
I do think risks sometimes need to be made. Sometimes you can get so used to a routine that it’s difficult to move forward. But you can gradually get yourself in a position that lessens the risk. For us, we are lessening the risk by reducing our debt and learning how to better handle our finances. Our financial position was very poor when we attempted our first business, and we only made things worse. We weren’t ready for the risk and we got a little burned.
Si Note: This is a very wise advice. Take the risks, just try to lessen them. Sometimes failure is the best teacher, but it’s still better to reduce the pain.