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I’ve mentioned in the past that I’m big on having no debt, but I haven’t yet explored the topic exclusively. This episode is dedicated to defining The No-Debt Mentality.
I was planning to record a solo-show, but while talking about it to my wife, Laci, she actually volunteered to join me! So instead of just a personal overview, it’s more of a behind-the-scenes look at how a married couple handles real life without ever going into debt for anything (that includes a house).
I know many of those who are younger are regularly shown the lifestyle of debt as being a given. It’s simply presented as something you do (and as something everyone does). But debt is always a choice. It’s a choice you make—and often justify. I want to show you one example of a couple who chose not to use debt as a tool.
You’re either the master or the slave.
You own your life or you owe your life.
I’m hoping to especially be a voice for those who are younger to give a tangible account of what life looks like without debt. It’s definitely not easy, but it is 100% possible and very rewarding.
The Purpose of This Episode:
First of all, it’s not a guide to get out of debt. We don’t do debt, hence we have no firsthand experience with getting out of debt. Would our values enable us to get out of debt quick if we had any? Certainly, but I’m not here today to help you get out of debt if you already have it.
The purpose of this episode is to define The No-Debt Mentality. That’s it. I want to explain what The No-Debt Mentality means and show you what it looks like.
We talk about:
- Communication about finances before marriage.
- Early marriage (sitting on the floor without a couch, Laci not having a car, etc.).
- Resisting the temptation of the $200 monthly car payment (even when it sounds logical).
- Why going into debt is not an investment.
- How I avoided a debt mentality from a young age.
- Buying cars in cash.
- Buying houses in cash.
- Bootstrapping businesses.
- The reason I think asking “What about the extreme situations that necessitate debt?” is the wrong question to ask.
- Laci’s real fears about The No-Debt Mentality that I purposefully did not censor.
There are a lot of younger people listening to this show. People in their teens. People in high school. They’re bombarded with messages to the contrary. I could not care less if I don’t convince someone in their 40s who has 5 or 6 figures of debt who wants to defend to me why they have it and why they were smart to go into it. If you’re happy living a debt lifestyle, I have no interest in changing your mind (yes, I really do get angry emails from people telling me why debt was smart for them. I’m not here to change your mind if you think that.).
I want to show people that this is real: My situation is real, making a living doing what you love is real, and you can do this. There are a lot of people like us that are doing this. There are also a lot of other people out there who will tell you to compromise. They’ll tell you you should compromise and that you have no other option.
But you DO have an option. It is always a choice.
Every single time someone goes into debt, they are making a choice.
They might defend that choice or justify that choice, but it’s always a choice. I don’t care if I don’t change someone’s mind with this show, I care that I am a voice that some young person out there hears that goes against the terrible advice they’re hearing from everyone else on the planet. If I plant a little seed, that’s all I want.
I’m big on transparency. I share with you every single thing that I do: what works and what doesn’t work—everything. You see and hear about my successes, and I share the behind-the-scenes details with you here.
I talk about how many hours I’ve worked, when I wake up, how long I spend on podcast and shownotes, how I handle email marketing, growth scaling, client work, building courses, my background in web design and business experience from the computer repair company I had.
My whole purpose with this podcast is to show you that none of it is magic.
I tell you everything. I want you to be able to get inside my head and understand exactly how I think and how it translates to any of my successes.
I want to challenge you.
Here’s your invitation: if you don’t want to be challenged, just skip over this episode. Don’t listen to it. I don’t expect you to agree with everything I say, I expect you to think. If I can get you to think, then I’ve done my job.
I hope you listen in to our story.
- 057: How to Make a Living with Your Passion Without Going to College (podcast)
- 091: How I Prevent Unwanted Spending Even Though I’ve Never Had A Budget (podcast)
- Why I Am Never Going to Own a Home Again (article by James Altucher)
- Why I Would Rather Shoot Myself In the Head Than Own a Home (article by James Altucher)