Back to the Beginning: Shannon Shares Some of Her Favorite Posts

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Do you ever land on a blog that’s new to you and feel like you’re in the middle of a discussion that’s already been going on for awhile? Then you go back to older posts to familiarize yourself with the conversation so you can get in the loop? It’s no easy task, especially for blogs that have been around for several years.

Given the way content on a blog flows like a stream, it’s pretty easy to find yourself in this situation. That’s why we decided to publish the Back to the Beginning Series. Ben, Claire, and I will be sharing with your our personal favorite ReadyForZero blog posts so you can gain familiarity with our blog and so we can revisit some of our favorite topics. Even if you’re a long-time reader, we hope this series will bring to light some tips and information you may have forgotten about!

So grab some popcorn or a cup of coffee and relax while I take you through some of my personal favorite posts. I hope it’s as fun and interesting for you to peruse as it was for me to compile!

It’s not always fun, but you can’t have the debt payoff conversation without first talking about setting a budget. Here are some of my favorite posts to help you create and maintain a budget you can live with.

How to Create a Budget
Are you a budget newby? Here’s your first stop: Ben goes through everything you need to know to plan a budget.

How to Master the “Mental Game” of Sticking to a Budget
The hardest part about budgeting isn’t creating one – it’s mastering the mental game of sticking to it. Fiona offers useful advice to help you win the mental battle against budgeting.

Jay Z and Other Celebs Learned These Money Lessons the Hard Way (But You Don’t Have To)
I don’t know about you, but I have a terrible habit of thinking all of my problems would be solved if I just earned (a lot) more income. That’s why I dove into some celebrity stories – to show that even earning millions is useless if you don’t have a financial plan. Good news for budgeters!

Let’s talk about debt! Here are some of my favorite posts on how to pay off debt:

Debt Avalanche Vs. Debt Snowball: Which is The Best Way to Pay Off Debt?
It’s the age old question – should you pay off your low balance debt or high interest rate debt first? In this post, Loren goes into detail about both methods to help you decide.

How to Get Out of Debt
The hardest thing about paying off debt is often simply knowing where to start. Here, Ben outlines everything you need to know to get started and pay off your debt for good.

Why It’s So Hard to Pay Off Debt – And What You Can Do About It
Do you ever wonder why it takes so long to get rid of your debt? Kali explores this topic to help you understand and battle this common problem.

Uncovering the Hidden Tactics that Are Keeping You in Debt
There’s a lot more than just high interest payments that keep people in debt. Claire uncovers numerous hidden tactics lenders use to prolong your debt so you can fall victim no more.

How to Deal with Debt Collectors: Lessons from My Experience
One of the scariest things about paying off debt can be dealing with debt collectors. Amanda shares her experience so you can understand your rights in this tough situation.

How to Give Yourself a Raise By Paying Off Debt
Do you ever stop and wonder why you work so hard to pay off your debt? Carrie talks about all the good stuff to look forward to when you reach debt freedom – thus helping you focus on the why when things get tough.

Are you battling credit cards? Here are some of my favorite posts on dealing with credit card debt:

How Do I Find Out What Credit Cards I Have In My Name?
For anyone who’s been battling debt for a long time, it’s not uncommon to be unsure of what accounts they have in their name. Amanda details how you can find out so you don’t have to worry about mystery charge offs any longer.

How to Read a Credit Card Statement
Once you have a good understanding of who you owe, you might find yourself stumped by your credit card statements. Claire gets to the bottom of this by deciphering credit card statements line by line – enabling you to understand what you’re dealing with.

The Myth of Minimum Payments: They’re Sneakier than You Think
Minimum payments are sneaky sneaky…they’re created to keep you in debt for as long as possible! Ben explains how this works. Warning, what you read may make you angry!

The 4 Most Dangerous Things About Credit Cards (And How to Protect Yourself)
By now it’s probably pretty clear that credit cards are dangerous – but just how dangerous are they? Carrie highlights the four ways credit cards can drag your finances down so you know how to spot the dangers before they happen.

The Key to Paying Off Credit Card Debt Quickly
So you have credit cards and want to get rid of them as fast as possible? Kayla takes a holistic view into the situation so you can get this pernicious problem out of your life for good.

Student loan debt is heating up the news waves these days. If you’re working your way through student loan debt, you won’t want to miss these posts!

How to Pay Off Student Loans (Faster)
When it comes to student loan debt, it’s important to understand all your options. Since financial aid offices aren’t always the best at explaining them to graduates, Claire details them for you here – plus a few strategies to help you pay your student loans off faster.

Real World Money Advice For New Grads
New grads are facing a tough job market and even tougher financial landscape. Based on my own experiences, here’s some advice to help you navigate the real world for the first time.

Lost Generation No More: It’s Time to Take Back Our Deferred Dreams
I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of reading about all the things young professionals can’t do because of their student debt. That’s why I wrote this post – so we can take back our deferred dreams and get on with our lives.

Finances are tough enough to navigate as individuals – but when you throw someone else into the mix things can get complicated, fast. Here are a few posts that will help you and your significant other navigate this rocky terrain together.

It’s Time to Get Realistic About Marriage and Money
Gender roles are changing quickly  - and so is the way people deal with money in marriage. In this post, I talk about how you can work with those changes to find financial balance in your marriage.

Your All-Inclusive Guide to Saving Money on Weddings
Few things set a couple’s finances back more than a wedding. Not to mention the constant cost of attending your friends’ weddings! Here, I outline all the ways you can save money on weddings – whether you’re a guest, in the wedding party, or are getting hitched yourselves.

Now let’s talk about the other side of debt: credit scores. These posts are my go-to resources for sharing information on what’s often an elusive subject.

How Many Credit Scores Do You Have? (The answer might surprise you)
Get ready, this one’s a shocker. Ben digs deep into the world of credit scores to show that we all have more than one – a lot more than one! Read on to find out why.

How Your Credit Report Determines Your Credit Score
What does it all mean, anyway? Why should we care so much about or credit scores? Miranda breaks down the way credit reports and credit scores work so you can understand how it all relates to your financial situation.

Do-It-Yourself Credit Repair (Without Spending a Dime)
Once you understand how credit scoring works, you’ll want to make sure yours is accurate! Our resident credit reports expert, Michael, talks about how you can repair any credit scoring or reporting issues you may find – all at no cost to you.

We can discuss strategies until we’re blue in the face, but it will all be for nought if we ignore the emotional side of budgeting, spending, and debt. Here are some of my favorite posts that address those topics.

How to Give Yourself a Clean Slate With Your Finances
First things first – if you’re facing any financial struggle at all, you’re probably blaming yourself. Kayla talks about why this happens and how you can give yourself a clean slate.

Hidden Emotional Factors That May Be Destroying Your Finances
Money and emotions are so intricately entwined that one can easily destroy the other. Kayla helps you discover what this means and if it’s happening to you.

10 Mental Barriers to Paying Off Debt
Just like budgeting, paying off debt is largely mental. I list a checklist of ways your brain might be preventing you from paying off debt; as well as tactics to employ to break the barriers down.

Would You Rather…
What kind of lifestyle do you really want? And what are you willing to sacrifice to make that happen? Ben dives in to this topic to help you realize your true financial priorities.

Need a little break for some motivation? We’ve got some fun posts to share with you!

Success Stories
Do you know what I hate most about debt? The fact that it’s so easy to feel like we’re fighting it alone. That’s why I love every single ReadyForZero success story. They’re a chance to read about people just like you and I who managed to tame the debt beast once and for all.

What to Do When the Finish Line Seems So… Far… Away
Most debt payoff journeys are longer than we’d prefer. That’s what makes this post by Jason so great! He faces head on the fact that sometimes the finish line is too far away – and gives actionable advice to keep you going.

What To Do When Your Financial Ideas Burn Out
Going through financial burnout? It’s bound to happen at some point. Claire walks you through the process of finding out what’s causing your burnout and how you can reignite your motivation.

How to Be At Peace with Your Financial Situation
When it comes to matters of the heart, Kayla is the writer to end all writers. In this post, she examines the need to feel at peace with your financial situation – not to mention showing you how you can do it. Definitely bookmark this one for the long debt payoff road ahead!

What are your thoughts? Do you have any favorite ReadyForZero posts that I didn’t share? Share them in the comments below! And stay tuned for next time as Ben and Claire create their own lists!

Image Credit: Silvia Sila

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