How I Succeeded But Made No Progress (Debt Update)

A year and a half ago I proudly said I would be debt free in 5 months.

I was wrong

I have thought about writing this update so many times, but I feel so guilty.

Guilty because it’s not paid off. Guilty because here I am telling you to pay down your debt, live a simple life, sacrifice and it feels like I’m not doing that myself.

I finally decided that you deserve the truth, the numbers as they are. You need to know that I’m a fraud that I haven’t done what I’ve set out to do.

And I hope, truly hope, that you don’t judge me too harshly, that you listen to my reasons. And learn from them.

Last Debt Update Numbers

You can go back to my old article to see my numbers but for simplicity, I’m going to put them here.

Chase: $6,910.85
Discover: $3,771.59
Barclay: $ 5,566.78
Capital One: $3.025.91
Total: $19,275.13

My Current Numbers

Chase: $0
Discover: $6,565.71
Barclay: $0
Capital One: $0
American Express: $2,219.64
Consolidation Loan: $11,553.94
Total: $20,339.29
Difference: + $1,064.16


After looking at those numbers I hope you now understand my hesitance. This is not easy for me. I don’t do well with failure, especially since I’ve been talking about it for SO LONG here on the site.

You’ll notice cards paid off, and new cards added. American Express was added because my wife and I decided we would simply pay it off at the end of every month and get some rewards points.

This was only done after months of paying for everything with cash so we figured we had learned to not pay more than we have. We were wrong.

Also, there is a consolidation loan. We did this because the interest on some of the cards we had were well over 20% and the loan is only 9% so we save money by doing that.

But that doesn’t answer the big question.

Why is there more debt?

The answer is simple. I am a fraud.

I’m about to explain to you how much I’ve done in 2 years, how I’ve grown a business and left my 9 to 5 to work for myself.

I may be very convincing but just remember that no matter what I say, I am a fraud.

The Discover Card Was Paid Off

That loan paid off the Discover card when I took it out. And I foolishly thought to myself I could use the discover card to springboard my business.

It’s true I wouldn’t have been able to have the Amazon Income months I’ve had without using debt, but it still stings that I have it.

Also, note that every penny on the discover card has come from “business” debt. I have not once put a single personal item on that card.

Problem with that is that it’s still in my name so regardless of the fact that I’ve used it for business it still affects my credit.

The Amazon side of the business should have this paid off soon though as that business is still doing very well.

American Express

American Express sounded great, and for a while, everything worked out amazing.

We would use it for things we were going to buy anyway that we had the cash for, but eventually the day came where we put more on the card then we had money in the bank, and one thing leads to another.

We are back to a cash-based budget again and will have this paid off shortly.

Consolidation Loan

This was such a great idea, I still believe that. We had been on a cash budget for a while and not once did we go further into debt.

By switching everything to this loan it literally will save us thousands of dollars in paying it off.

Even with putting things on the American Express and Discover cards it doesn’t affect it much as their interest rates are about the same as this loan.

What About All The Money You Made?

“But you put your income reports out every month and you’re making far more than what you say you need”

That’s true, and to be honest my wife and I don’t spend more than $3,000 a month on our expenses they are around $2200 and that includes paying some of the debt down.

So where did my money go?

Really 3 main places.


Before I left my 9 to 5 of 11 years I wanted to have a nice buffer.

I wasn’t making enough with my side hustles to pay the bills, and though I knew I would eventually I needed a buffer just in case.

So I saved up a years worth of basic needs (Around $18,000) and put it in my savings account. After I left my 9 to 5 job we lived off of that savings and I put every penny the business got back into the business.

Now that the business is generating enough money to pay our bills and then some I continue to save “just in case”


While the savings dwindled I grew the business. I had planned on if the business failed after 6 months (or wasn’t making enough money) that I would go back to a regular job.

It took 5 months to get enough clients and income from the business to support business growth as well as pay for our basic needs.

Now, I want the business to grow, and I also want the business to have money on hand in case something comes up that needs capital or will make a good buy.

So not only am I storing money in a personal savings account for our basic needs, I’m also storing money in a business saving account in case something happens there.


If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter you’ll notice we have done a lot of travelling lately.

It’s important to note that we only go places where we have friends or family there, so we pay for flights but once we are there we spend very little money.

We essentially are just moving our lives to a different location temporarily while we still work.

What’s Next?

So where do I go from here?

Well, my business has never been making more money than it is right now. I’m regularly bringing in double what I need to pay my bills.

I’m also sending thousands at a time to pay off debts which is a great feeling.

I set the goal of being debt free in 5 months in my last debt update and as you can see I failed miserably. But this time I can do it, I have everything set up, I’m ready for what is coming. I will have all $20,000 paid off by the end of July 2018.

That comes out to an average of $4,000 a month. Of which I’m already sending about $550 as the minimum.

So I need to add around $3,500 extra a month in order to reach this goal.

My freelance income is pretty steady at about $5,000 a month right now, and Amazon, if I spend more time on it, can be in the $1,000 range of profit pretty easy.

Even after paying my basic business and personal bills with that alone leaves me exactly $3,500 a month and I have other avenues of income that I’m working on.

I Am A Fraud

I started off telling you I’m a failure, I told you how I’m in more debt now than when I started, and that I was scared to tell you.

It’s true, I am a fraud.

Yes, my life is better now than it has ever been. I can wake up when I want, work when I want, go where I want when I want. It’s amazing and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

But, when it comes to paying off debt I’m a fraud, a “do as I say not as I do” kind of guy and it makes me sick.

So I’m asking your forgiveness, your understanding, and your support as I spend the next 5 months laser-focused on getting this debt paid off.

I know that I can do it.

On August 1st, 2018 I want to write another article called “I’m No Longer A Fraud”

Join me in spending the next 5 months reaching your goals. Leave a comment telling me what you want to accomplish by August 1st, 2018 and we can all help each other.


7 thoughts on “How I Succeeded But Made No Progress (Debt Update)”

  1. Thanks for being honest here! You just have to shake it off and refocus 🙂 I’m really impressed at you being able to save up a year’s worth of expenses. I haven’t been able to do that yet.

    1. Chonce, I’m shaking it off as we speak. The response I’ve got back from posting this has been amazing. The year’s of expense took a very long time to do, and because I wasn’t making enough much of it is gone now which is a bummer but I’m still doing very well now. July 31st is the date for sure.

  2. If you’re a fraud, I don’t know what the hell I am then. I’ve been paying off my debt seriously since 2015 and I’m not debt free. Life happens. Don’t be so hard on yourself. Things happen for a reason. You’ve been able to grow your income, so I know that we will be seeing your debt free post coming soon.

    1. Jason, yes life happens and it got in the way for me. I have so much to work on but I’m so focused on accomplishing my goal now I can’t think of anything else. I’ll get it all paid off by July 31st this year for sure.

      Thanks for your continued support. And I look forward to interviewing you on the podcast soon.

  3. Ha! Like Jason said, if you’re a fraud, then I don’t want to know what the hell I am. I’ve been a debt blogger for two years, and I’m just now getting ready to start making extra payments towards my debt here in the next few weeks. I had to build up a savings buffer first; that was more important to me than shooting money out to my lenders like throwing popcorn at an out-of-control ceiling fan.

    Plus, we all have mistakes. The key is that you’re still moving forward, which is what counts in the end.

    1. Thank you for the kind words Lindsay. I have so much work left to do but will get it done. I did the same thing and built a savings up to live on while I grew the business. It made me nervous for a while but now that I’m making much more money I stress a lot less.

    2. Your comment on throwing popcorn at an out-of-control ceiling fan made me laugh out loud. That’s going into my next show.

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