Coach was Right! No Excuses Allowed!! The Debt Trap of Excuses

basketball
We all start out 0-0.

Winner’s Win!!  Just Do Your JOB!! Only Losers Have Excuses!!  If those brought back some memories from your glory days then you aren’t alone.  Over 8 million high school children nationwide are playing sports currently.  Most business leaders also played some form of competitive varsity level sports.  Competition in childhood teaches a lot of the grit and determination needed to go into the world and be successful.  There are also the coaches that scream, spit, talk logically or illogically to you, and motivate that can help you learn either good lessons in life or bad lessons in life.

I saw a coach completely addicted to chewing tobacco and he later died of cancer.  I learned to stay away from that.  I had a crazy coach screaming at me every day, and I learned how to take criticism.  I was always being to told to get better, do better, work harder, and that my best could be better.  I kept excelling in this environment all the way through college.  Now as a coach I see kids regularly getting better, exceeding my and their expectations through determination, and with this comes winning in sports, the classroom, and later in life.

Soccer
Follow the Game Plan!

So, what does this have to do with debt?  Well, going into debt is losing.  You didn’t plan properly, you didn’t have the money, it’s an unplanned emergency, but the real problem is getting stuck the debt trap.  Too many people give excuses for their debt and then rationalize it.  That’s a huge trap.  I hear it all the time with the excuses on why some people have debt.  My only debt was a car and I will never do that again.  Then I got a mortgage that was more than I wanted, and I’m aggressively paying that off with double and triple payments each month.  I was dumb and got into debt.  There is no excuse for those debts.  I could have waited 2 more years, saved, and built a smaller cheaper house with no debt.  I should have waited to buy the car instead of the $150 a month payments.  I paid it off in 8 months and was pissed at myself for the mistake.  There is no real reason for debt (No Excuses!)

But, what about if you come from a poor background, live in an expensive city, or don’t have opportunities.  Then create a game plan and find a way to win just like coach taught you!  Don’t allow the excuses into our head.  Coach taught you that there are no excuses, just follow the game plan and we will win.  It doesn’t matter the odds against you because you still get to show up, put on your jersey, and play the game like you practiced.  If you have poor work habits in practice then they will show up in your debt game.  It’s the same with debt.  You have to move out of the expensive city, rise up and use your poor background as a strength to motivate you, and you have to make your own opportunities.  You get to wake up and play the game every day, and your mindset is a huge part of the outcome.  Don’t allow the excuses to justify your debt.

man down
Debt Trapped!

Don’t get stuck in the debt trap of excuses.  Most people who follow the excuse logic are those who just follow the herd.  Everyone is taking out student loans, so it’s the system and how it works.  I don’t have a choice and had to take out the loans.  It’s not me it’s the corrupt system that I have to join and it forced me into debt to get an education. What would your old coach say to that lame excuse?  He’d say find a way!! Grow a pair!! Stop your whining!!  You can’t just give up and lose!!!  Fight back and let’s give them hell!  Go to community college, live at home, take online courses, join the military, Starbucks will help you pay tuition, or just find a trade school job.  You only have to be good at one thing to find a great job and make great money.  Heck, I’m a college educated teacher/coach and my plumber makes more money than I do, with only his experience for an education!  You may not need formal schooling to kick ass in life.  My plumber didn’t need it and he runs a great business employing others in the process.

Don’t let your coach know about your lazy credit card habits.  He will tear you a new one if he finds out you are just buying crap on credit cards and carrying a balance.  He would be disappointed in your lack of discipline and probably throw up that you are losing with the added fees of carrying a balance each month.  There are no excuses for this kind of lazy behavior.  He might throw you off the team for this type of poor practice. You can’t make any excuses for this debt.

volleyball

This advice might sound harsh, but let’s be real for a moment.  If you took this as harsh then it’s likely you are the one using excuses for your debt, to begin with.  I just described you and it hit home.  That’s great news!  If you got offended then now you know you have a problem with excuses.  You are trapped in your debt until you stop making excuses.  So, change your financial work habits today.  Stop buying crap you can’t afford, stop getting car loans, aggressively pay off your student loans and man up to your past mistakes and learn from them. Teach your children that debt is losing, so they don’t have to suffer through wealth lost at an early age like you did.  Just stop blaming anyone or anything else, but you for your debt and get rid of it quick.

The next time you want to buy something on credit or get a loan, let your old coach’s voice echo in your head for a minute.  Would he approve of your purchase, and would he approve your method of paying for it? He taught you to work hard, don’t back down, find a way to win, respect your opponent, and win with class.  Now, let those lessons continue in adulthood and let’s all be winners in our financial lives.

 

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6 Comments

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  1. Drop and give me 20!

    Love the analogy. “Success is 80 percent mental” . So start working on that aspect today.

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  2. That Money Blog June 24, 2018 — 2:24 pm

    I’m lucky to have made my worst money mistake before I even got a job, and it (mostly) scared me away from debt for a long time. It was early 2000, and I entered my working life (and marriage) with a $270/month payment for 5 years on a no-frills 1998 Chevrolet Cavalier. That was a huge drain on me for a long time, and now I can’t stand to have any debt at all, and so we are aggressively paying off the mortgage.

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  3. Great article! It’s important to have the self-discipline to say no when you need to, even if you don’t want to.

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  4. The Millionaire Educator June 26, 2018 — 8:33 pm

    Thanks for the tough love Coach! The phrase “find a way” seems to run on a loop in my reptilian brain. There is always a way; it might be your plan Z, but it’s out there somewhere.

    Yesterday, I paid cash for a 2014 Toyota Prius…well, mostly cash. I did run $2k through a credit card so that I could get some hotel-points action, but don’t worry because we never carry credit card debt long enough to pay interest.

    Have a great summer,
    Ed .

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