“Most people won’t change until until the pain of where they are exceeds the pain of change.” -Dave Ramsey
I saw a first-hand demonstration of that truth yesterday afternoon as I sat in oldest daughter’s room, chatting with her. The youngest of our four kids, age 10 and a boy to boot (the other three are girls), came dashing into Madelyn’s bedroom with a super hero cape (i.e. blanket) around his neck.
“I made a new superhero character, mom!” he said excitedly. The cape fully covered his new costume, so we could gain the full effect of his surprise.
He suddenly and authoritatively opened his cape to reveal his new creation.
“It’s……UNDERWEAR MAN!!!” he said, clothed only in his orange boxer briefs, eyes steadily fixed on Madelyn to gauge her reaction.
As quickly as Madelyn broke into horrified shrieks, Sam collapsed to the floor in hysterical laughter.
“Get out of here!” she screamed, but the results of his….ahem…..demonstration……. were too big a match for his sister’s threats of inflicting pain should he not leave the room immediately.
Then it happened.
Madelyn got up with that look in her eye; a look of a big sister more-than-peeved at her harassing little brother.
As she started toward him with “the look”, he got up, still giggling but suddenly aware of the seriousness of the situation.
Madelyn has a good 30 pounds of weight and 8 inches of height on Sam. And three years of intense Krav Maga training under her belt. As strong as Sam is, he’s no match for his well-trained sister.
Screams of “Ouch. Ouch! OUCH!” proceeded from his obviously terrified self as his sister began to smack his under-clothed body with a plastic hanger, and finally the pain of where he was exceeded the pain of change. He left the room, retreating to the security of anywhere outside of his angry sister’s reach.
The whole hilarious scenario reminded me of us on the October 2012 day when we sat down for the first time to tally up the total of our debt. Until that day, we’d been living blissfully in the world of “We can afford the payments just fine.”
I don’t remember exactly what caused us to take an inward look at our financial selves; I only remember that we had recently charged nearly $5k onto a credit card for a new snowplow. Something in that purchase triggered us to look in the mirror at our financial selves, and we saw an impending train wreck.
We started to wonder how we would ever survive if Rick got laid off – or if we had the smallest of unexpected expenses. And so began our journey to debt freedom.
Our three and a half year journey has been riddled with major victories and mega setbacks. There have been days, weeks, months when we’ve seriously considered bankruptcy or just plain living with the debt.
But the memory of that October day’s pain still stings strongly in our minds, so we press on toward the prize of debt free.
Similarly, I have a feeling that it will be a good while before Sam attempts to traumatize his sister again with Underwear Man. At least I hope so. For both of their sake’s. 🙂
Do you remember the day when the pain of where you were at exceeded the pain of change and you began your “get out of debt” journey?