Author Topic: Attacking Debt--suggestions?  (Read 30992 times)

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #50 on: January 14, 2016, 07:38:44 PM »
I'm not looking for any "ethical" arguments, but what ReadySetMillionaire suggests is probably your best option, mathematically speaking. Look for higher paid positions in teaching. As your income creeps up, contribute to your 403b/457/whatever to keep your income low. You will be putting money away while simultaneously getting credit for your $0 student loan payments.

That's a very good idea. I would like more information on it.

The $0 per month payments are what I owe, so I am currently in repayment, not deferment.

I'm wondering if there's an option to go back to school and stay in repayment? My lender said that my loans would automatically go back into deferment, but I wonder if there is a way around this. A $0 per month balance on PSLF and IBR AND status as a student would be ideal. Do you think I could work out this deal with them? See, right now, I actually owe less on my loans while they're in repayment, because in deferment the $0 per month wouldn't be going toward my 120 consecutive payments.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2016, 08:04:11 PM by kmb501 »

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #51 on: January 14, 2016, 07:41:48 PM »

I think I'm ready to make a change, but I feel like I need more education. I know you are probably asking why, but I feel like I can't exactly do what I want with what I currently have. Going back to school might be kind of dumb, but what are my alternatives? I would love to throw 100 percent of my income at that debt and get it taken care of in 5 years or less, but I don't think that's even possible, and what's worse, in the past when I've made sacrifices to try to save money, I ended up being uncomfortable and actually spending MORE. I have a problem. I don't tend to reason through my situations.

That's the problem - it sounds like you don't know what you want, so going back to school could be a horrific, tragic mistake. In this thread alone, we all can't tell if you want to get more education for teaching, or go to vet school, or go to law school. It's probably the worst thing you can do in your situation. Your alternative is to work towards the PSL payoff as a teacher, and use these years to really determine what you want out of life. Question: do you have a partner or close family? what to they think about all of this?

I want it all, but to be realistic, it might make sense just to go back and finish that foreign language degree. An ESL teacher should have near fluency in a foreign language anyway. I think that would make me happy and be time well spent.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2016, 07:52:21 PM by kmb501 »

Kris

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #52 on: January 14, 2016, 07:49:31 PM »

I think I'm ready to make a change, but I feel like I need more education. I know you are probably asking why, but I feel like I can't exactly do what I want with what I currently have. Going back to school might be kind of dumb, but what are my alternatives? I would love to throw 100 percent of my income at that debt and get it taken care of in 5 years or less, but I don't think that's even possible, and what's worse, in the past when I've made sacrifices to try to save money, I ended up being uncomfortable and actually spending MORE. I have a problem. I don't tend to reason through my situations.

That's the problem - it sounds like you don't know what you want, so going back to school could be a horrific, tragic mistake. In this thread alone, we all can't tell if you want to get more education for teaching, or go to vet school, or go to law school. It's probably the worst thing you can do in your situation. Your alternative is to work towards the PSL payoff as a teacher, and use these years to really determine what you want out of life. Question: do you have a partner or close family? what to they think about all of this?

I want it all, but to be realistic, it might make sense just to go back and finish that foreign language degree. An ESL teacher should have near fluency in a foreign language anyway.

No.

I am a Ph.D. In a language. And a college language professor.

Going back for a language degree will not make you fluent. Do not do this.

If you want fluency in a language, there are other ways. PM me if you want. But do not take on more college debt. Because you will be deluding yourself.

FeelingRosie

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #53 on: January 14, 2016, 07:56:56 PM »
To me, there are only two ways of tackling this. The first being what a friend of mine did, is to work for a non-profit or university or such so that you're student loans will be forgiven in 10 years. In the mean time max out all your retirement contributions that are taken directly out of your pay check and get on the salary adjusted repayment plan, so hopefully you'll actually get a fair amount forgiven. The second way is to simply get angry about your debt and attack it with vengeance, which is what I chose to do. Find the cheapest possible place within walking distance to work. Drive your car as little as possible. Stop eating out completely. Grabbing a $5 burger might not seem like a bad deal, but it's always cheaper to make it yourself. If you just cook a huge pot of food on the weekend and just have to heat it up when you get back from work, it's even easier than going some place and ordering a burger.

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #54 on: January 14, 2016, 08:15:08 PM »
To me, there are only two ways of tackling this. The first being what a friend of mine did, is to work for a non-profit or university or such so that you're student loans will be forgiven in 10 years. In the mean time max out all your retirement contributions that are taken directly out of your pay check and get on the salary adjusted repayment plan, so hopefully you'll actually get a fair amount forgiven. The second way is to simply get angry about your debt and attack it with vengeance, which is what I chose to do. Find the cheapest possible place within walking distance to work. Drive your car as little as possible. Stop eating out completely. Grabbing a $5 burger might not seem like a bad deal, but it's always cheaper to make it yourself. If you just cook a huge pot of food on the weekend and just have to heat it up when you get back from work, it's even easier than going some place and ordering a burger.


See, I would have to throw over half of my entire income at that debt, and since there's a good chance it will be forgiven if I continue on the track I'm on now, I would rather just continue on this track and put as much money toward something else as I can. The maxed out contribution to the 401K work plan is a good idea, but I don't know how long I will be at this job, and one of my jobs doesn't even have that option, that I know of, because it's only part-time (really volunteer work but it pays a generous stipend). Is there an option for me to contribute to a retirement fund outside of my job so that I'll have it when I leave? I'm not planning for my current job to be permanent. I'm planning to move on to better things once I get a year or two of experience and get to know my boss and coworkers well enough to provide good references to my skills.

My second job may not pay much, but it's a wealth of knowledge and training. I learned most of what I know about teaching from that job. I also get a chance to hone my foreign language skills once in a while, because some of the refugees speak the languages I'm trying to learn. I just feel like a class would help me pick it up more quickly. For me, one skill strengthens another. Conversation practice makes it easier for me to remember spelling and grammar rules and vice versa.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2016, 08:24:31 PM by kmb501 »

Bee21

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #55 on: January 15, 2016, 02:43:20 AM »
I am speechless.

Are you depressed? Are you incapable of making rational decisions, taking responsibility for your past actions and your future? You sound like you are gone with the fairies most of the time. Your stance n loan  forgiveness ( ie you should have your debts wiped out because ou were too stupid totake them etc) is just outrageous. Even if legally you can do it, but ethically? You are running away from your responsibilities.

At first I was pissed when I read this. Then I just couldn't help but laugh out loud. Bee21, how's the view from your high horse?



I quite like my high horse. What's wrong with repaying our debts? Why shouldn't we do it?

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #56 on: January 15, 2016, 03:18:08 AM »
I am speechless.

Are you depressed? Are you incapable of making rational decisions, taking responsibility for your past actions and your future? You sound like you are gone with the fairies most of the time. Your stance n loan  forgiveness ( ie you should have your debts wiped out because ou were too stupid totake them etc) is just outrageous. Even if legally you can do it, but ethically? You are running away from your responsibilities.

At first I was pissed when I read this. Then I just couldn't help but laugh out loud. Bee21, how's the view from your high horse?



I quite like my high horse. What's wrong with repaying our debts? Why shouldn't we do it?

It would be very inconvenient for me without a second full-time job. Merely existing for ten years to pay off a debt that will be forgiven for public service anyway, makes no sense to me. I could pile those unnecessary student loan payments into a 401K plan and work toward early retirement, or I could throw it into a CD with a five year maturity limit and have a fair amount of savings fairly quickly. I could also just do the dumb thing and save up to go back to school. In any case, paying off my loans when the government agreed to pay them for me (under certain conditions) just doesn't make sense to me.

I know some think the student loan debt ceiling is another bubble waiting to break, but that's the government's issue, not mine, just like the housing crisis was also the government's issue. Do I think we should get people in office who care about the national debt? Yes, I do think we should, but do I think the American citizens should take it upon themselves to pay a debt they really didn't create? No, I don't. In my opinion, education should be free to begin with. Charging so much for it makes little sense to me. A default on these loans en masse would send a clear message to the institutions that the current system is not working, and hopefully it would mean education would become affordable again. I feel like I was robbed. Much of the financial aid I received was in the form of unsubsidized loans that accrued interest WHILE I was still in school and sometimes unavailable to work due to status as a full-time student. If you ask me, that's robbery and not fair at all. I'm not in a hurry to take any of my hard earned money to throw at that debt, especially since I'm not legally obligated to.

I will repeat, though, if I could find a second full-time job that pays as well as the one I currently have, I would be willing to attack those unsubsidized loans, because the interest on them is over half of what I make each year.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2016, 03:31:43 AM by kmb501 »

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #57 on: January 15, 2016, 03:41:31 AM »
I don't want to touch the bulk of my student loan, the unsubsidized loans, but I wonder if it would hurt to try to get the subsidized loans out of the way. They've hardly accrued any interest, so the payments on them would be really low. Do you think it might be worth it to try to pay those down while letting the elephant in the room wander off?

Wow, I feel like I need to look for a second full-time job.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2016, 03:43:25 AM by kmb501 »

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #58 on: January 15, 2016, 06:38:37 AM »
My understanding is that government forgiveness of loans for people in public service was designed to help people like you: those with loans for education who are doing a job in the public sector that requires that education but doesn't pay particularly well.

The cumulative effect of all the choices you have made so far, regardless of whether you knew what you were doing, or should have known what you are doing, or should have been sat down and told what you are doing, has led you to where you are today.    Where you are today is that you need to buckle down to 120 months of public sector work, using the education you got from those loans.   For you, that means being a teacher in the public sector. 

If you can add to your current education without additional loans and without adding any months or years to the time it would take you to have them forgiven, then go for it - part-time classes paid out of pocket while you are still working full-time is probably the only practical way to do this.  If you can get a better paid or more career orientated teaching job in the public sector, go for it.  Otherwise, carry on with your current job.  Try to find ways of treating yourself, or treating yourself better, that do not involve fast food burgers which will destroy your health and your wealth.  Put your spare cash, including every $5 that you haven't spent on burgers, into your retirement fund.  Put a chart on your wall with 120 squares on it and cross off each one which counts towards forgiveness of your loans.

If you are truly interested enough in learning languages to become fluent, you can find a way to do that without paying anything, through self-study and spending time with native speakers.  I've had a lot of education in a foreign language (not to degree level, though), I've lived and worked in the country where it is the native language, I've attended and chaired work meetings in that language.  I'm nowhere near fluent and never will be, and I'll never have a good enough accent to teach others.  The fact that you speak "a little French" and "a little Spanish" even after studying full time at (uncompleted) degree level suggests to me that you are probably in the same situation I am: moderately interested and moderately skilled but never going to get to the expert level.

Reading your posts, I think that for you the idea of going back to school is a way of retreating from the adult world, a way of avoiding your problems, and a way to avoid accepting a future which starts from where you are now.  I think you are thinking of it as a kind of time machine which lets you redo everything in your past which you think of as a mistake.   It's not a time machine: whatever you do, in 10 years time you are always going to be 10 years older than you are now, and the only question is: will you have put in the time to get your loans forgiven and a decent pension investment, or won't you?

How many of those 120 boxes can you tick off right now? By the end of another 30 days, you'll be able to tick off another one.

Good luck.


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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #59 on: January 15, 2016, 06:55:08 AM »
You seem very adamant about wanting to go back to school, even after multiple people pointed out why it's a terrible decision.  What's the reason for this?  Get past all of the excuses about learning another language or earning more money, because plenty of people provided alternatives, and be honest about why you want to go back so badly.  I suspect it doesn't have anything to do with money or a degree.

Have you considered seeing a therapist to talk through some of this stuff with?

ReadySetMillionaire

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #60 on: January 15, 2016, 07:00:19 AM »
Bee21: OP would be paying his debts per the terms of the note he signed.

Jakejake

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #61 on: January 15, 2016, 07:26:56 AM »
Bee21: OP would be paying his debts per the terms of the note he signed.
I completely understand the point you were making about this being a legit way to pay back the loans (through service).

I think the tone of the responses may have been a reaction to the thread title, Attacking Debt, which turned into what seemed to be not wanting to pay the debt or do the service component of it, and whining (perhaps in a humorous self-deprecating way) that it was unfair they were being held responsible in any way for spending 100k of other people's money to support 10 years of bad decision making.

RamonaQ

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #62 on: January 15, 2016, 07:40:34 AM »

You have $2500 in income (~$2000 after taxes) and are spending $1055.  Where is the other $945 going?


+1

I looked at some of your older threads and it looks like you have anywhere from $500-$1000 of spending that is unaccounted for each month.  I would strongly suggest tracking where your money is actually going right now.  If you can't account for where half your take home pay goes, finding another job or changing your mode of transportation isn't going to help much, because you could easily blow those savings without even realizing it.

pompera_firpa

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #63 on: January 15, 2016, 09:18:07 AM »
I think I'm ready to make a change, but I feel like I need more education. I know you are probably asking why, but I feel like I can't exactly do what I want with what I currently have. Going back to school might be kind of dumb, but what are my alternatives? I would love to throw 100 percent of my income at that debt and get it taken care of in 5 years or less, but I don't think that's even possible, and what's worse, in the past when I've made sacrifices to try to save money, I ended up being uncomfortable and actually spending MORE. I have a problem. I don't tend to reason through my situations.

Yeah, I think we're all noticing that you operate from the gut, rather than reason. You seem like your response to being lost in the woods would be to run in some direction, ANY direction, rather than to sit still a moment to try to get your bearings and figure out which direction would be best.

At heart, I think what everyone here is telling you-- in one way or another-- is to STOP DOING THAT, because a) that's what got you into trouble in the first place, b) it is prone to getting you into more trouble, and c) it is not, in any way, shape, or fashion, going to be helpful in getting you OUT of trouble. You feel like, because you have a big problem, you need to solve it with something equally big! and fast! because it sucks to feel like this! This is not the case.

Consider what you were talking about when you said "I end up being uncomfortable and actually spending MORE"-- because learning to deal with discomfort without throwing money at it is at the heart of the philosophy around here. We use relatively mild discomfort (OH NO I CANNOT WATCH THE TV SHOW I WANT IMMEDIATELY / OH NO I HAVE TO MAKE MY OWN DINNER) as a tool to inoculate ourselves against things that are actually hard and bad. Think of it as curated discomfort-- a specific set of discomforts selected to increase your satisfaction in life, and your confidence, and your joy by learning to overcome them.

We live in a culture that is terrified of boredom and terrified of discomfort. We are no longer encouraged to entertain ourselves or to toughen up; we're encouraged to buy things that will solve the immediate problem, although at the cost of never letting us learn how to deal with it ourselves and never letting us learn patience by having to wait for things.

What we are telling you is to be still for a moment and just sort of sit with the discomfort. Sit with the discomfort of being $100K in debt. Sit with the discomfort of being dissatisfied with what you are doing. Sit with the discomfort of not having everything you want RIGHT NOW. Don't berate yourself for it, don't flail around for ways to fix it as fast as possible, just hang out with these discomforts and let them exist.

Then start making changes. Not drastic ones; we are asking you to start making your own smoothies, not OMG MUST SOLVE ENTIRE PROBLEM RIGHT NOW. The point here is to grow as a person, and, by doing so, transform your financial situation.

Going to school to solve your problems is a solution that you're comfortable with, but honestly it ain't all that. Employers are more impressed by "I am fluent in Spanish after living in Mexico for three years" than "I went to school to learn Spanish and I have a degree to prove it!", because the first indicates that you're a badass who can brave the confusion and discomfort of learning another language through use in the field, while the other indicates that you are comfortable with learning things in a classroom setting and writing papers.

Get comfortable with discomfort, delayed reward, and inconvenience. Start by making your own smoothies.

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #64 on: January 15, 2016, 09:24:36 AM »

You have $2500 in income (~$2000 after taxes) and are spending $1055.  Where is the other $945 going?


+1

I looked at some of your older threads and it looks like you have anywhere from $500-$1000 of spending that is unaccounted for each month.  I would strongly suggest tracking where your money is actually going right now.  If you can't account for where half your take home pay goes, finding another job or changing your mode of transportation isn't going to help much, because you could easily blow those savings without even realizing it.

I downloaded a budgeting app, and most of that money has been going to unnecessary purchases, mostly fast food. I eat out a lot, and I also make unnecessary shopping trips. An easy solution to this is to just leave the debit card at home and force myself to make changes to accommodate my new budget or go without. Sacrificing a day's pleasure is worth it in the long run, and eventually I would adjust to not being able to run out and order a pizza, burger, milkshake, or smoothie whenever I'm stressed. That's one reason I want to start paying toward my goal first. Then, I could just live off of whatever is left over. I've done it before. Before I started this job, I was making about half of what I make now, and I was living okay off of it. I've just gotten lazy and adjusted my spending to fit my new salary, as people often do.

Again, the easiest solution to this is for me to just leave the debit card at home so that I don't make spur-of-the-moment purchases, like "oh, I love this sweater! How much is it? $20? It's such a pretty color, though! I think I'll get it just this once...." That's pretty much how my inner conversation goes, but if I don't have my debit card, "what a pretty sweater...oh, my debit card's at home....(at home) they don't have the sweater online...I guess I can wait until it goes on sale  (a few weeks later I've completely forgotten about the purchase I wanted to make). Another example, "oh, I don't feel like cooking tonight, I think I will order a pizza...they don't have any specials. Well $15 tonight isn't going to hurt...wait, I left my debit card...I guess I'll eat at home.  (if I make the effort to cook at home, I usually forget about the pizza. I've just been spoiling myself and justifying it lately. I really need to stop.)
« Last Edit: January 15, 2016, 09:40:29 AM by kmb501 »

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #65 on: January 15, 2016, 09:29:50 AM »
I downloaded a budgeting app, and it has been going to unnecessary purchases, mostly fast food. I eat out a lot, and I also make unnecessary shopping trips. An easy solution to this is to just leave the debit card at home and force myself to make changes to accommodate my new budget or go without. Sacrificing a day's pleasure is worth it in the long run, and eventually I would adjust to not being able to run out and order a pizza, burger, milkshake, or smoothie whenever I'm stressed.
Learn to cook more of the things you like, and take the sacrifice out of it. I'm all about having my cake and eating it too... I eat every bit as much delicious food as I did before MMM, I just make 95% of it myself, and I usually do it in bulk so I can take it along for lunches and snacks later.

Kris

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #66 on: January 15, 2016, 09:48:00 AM »
I think I'm ready to make a change, but I feel like I need more education. I know you are probably asking why, but I feel like I can't exactly do what I want with what I currently have. Going back to school might be kind of dumb, but what are my alternatives? I would love to throw 100 percent of my income at that debt and get it taken care of in 5 years or less, but I don't think that's even possible, and what's worse, in the past when I've made sacrifices to try to save money, I ended up being uncomfortable and actually spending MORE. I have a problem. I don't tend to reason through my situations.

Yeah, I think we're all noticing that you operate from the gut, rather than reason. You seem like your response to being lost in the woods would be to run in some direction, ANY direction, rather than to sit still a moment to try to get your bearings and figure out which direction would be best.

At heart, I think what everyone here is telling you-- in one way or another-- is to STOP DOING THAT, because a) that's what got you into trouble in the first place, b) it is prone to getting you into more trouble, and c) it is not, in any way, shape, or fashion, going to be helpful in getting you OUT of trouble. You feel like, because you have a big problem, you need to solve it with something equally big! and fast! because it sucks to feel like this! This is not the case.

Consider what you were talking about when you said "I end up being uncomfortable and actually spending MORE"-- because learning to deal with discomfort without throwing money at it is at the heart of the philosophy around here. We use relatively mild discomfort (OH NO I CANNOT WATCH THE TV SHOW I WANT IMMEDIATELY / OH NO I HAVE TO MAKE MY OWN DINNER) as a tool to inoculate ourselves against things that are actually hard and bad. Think of it as curated discomfort-- a specific set of discomforts selected to increase your satisfaction in life, and your confidence, and your joy by learning to overcome them.

We live in a culture that is terrified of boredom and terrified of discomfort. We are no longer encouraged to entertain ourselves or to toughen up; we're encouraged to buy things that will solve the immediate problem, although at the cost of never letting us learn how to deal with it ourselves and never letting us learn patience by having to wait for things.

What we are telling you is to be still for a moment and just sort of sit with the discomfort. Sit with the discomfort of being $100K in debt. Sit with the discomfort of being dissatisfied with what you are doing. Sit with the discomfort of not having everything you want RIGHT NOW. Don't berate yourself for it, don't flail around for ways to fix it as fast as possible, just hang out with these discomforts and let them exist.

Then start making changes. Not drastic ones; we are asking you to start making your own smoothies, not OMG MUST SOLVE ENTIRE PROBLEM RIGHT NOW. The point here is to grow as a person, and, by doing so, transform your financial situation.

Going to school to solve your problems is a solution that you're comfortable with, but honestly it ain't all that. Employers are more impressed by "I am fluent in Spanish after living in Mexico for three years" than "I went to school to learn Spanish and I have a degree to prove it!", because the first indicates that you're a badass who can brave the confusion and discomfort of learning another language through use in the field, while the other indicates that you are comfortable with learning things in a classroom setting and writing papers.

Get comfortable with discomfort, delayed reward, and inconvenience. Start by making your own smoothies.

+ 1.

I've been reading this thread, not commenting out of frustration, and this is pretty much exactly what I would have said.

zephyr911

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #67 on: January 15, 2016, 09:58:34 AM »
Has anyone suggested, in lieu of foreign travel, seeking immersion through volunteer work?

My mom lives in Boston and has been working with a Spanish-speaking church for the last couple of years, during which time she's recovered much of her early fluency after long years of disuse. This is free, and she gets it right where she lives. Maybe OP can find something similar. No cost, do some good for others, and maybe gain a little stoicism on the side from seeing their struggles.

Rubic

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #68 on: January 15, 2016, 10:37:11 AM »
Has anyone suggested, in lieu of foreign travel, seeking immersion through volunteer work?

+1

Start here:  http://www.workaway.info/hostlist.html

AZDude

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #69 on: January 15, 2016, 10:51:07 AM »
Would you consider moving?

Clark County School District (all of southern NV) is still 700 teachers short.  They are voting on the new contract today and beginning teachers will start at $40,900 next year.  If you stay the 30 years and continue your education you will be able to top out at $90,877. 

The cost of living is reasonable.  There are hundreds and hundreds of schools so if one isn't a good fit you have lots of options for something different.  Something to consider.

Same with Riverside county in California, where starting you can $50K+.

lbmustache

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #70 on: January 15, 2016, 11:40:07 AM »
Would you consider moving?

Clark County School District (all of southern NV) is still 700 teachers short.  They are voting on the new contract today and beginning teachers will start at $40,900 next year.  If you stay the 30 years and continue your education you will be able to top out at $90,877.

The cost of living is reasonable.  There are hundreds and hundreds of schools so if one isn't a good fit you have lots of options for something different.  Something to consider.

Same with Riverside county in California, where starting you can $50K+.

I am SO skeptical of this stuff. Teacher shortage. Everyone panics. Major hiring ensues. Orange County is doing the same thing - they are short teachers, and are even offering to pay for your credential while you teach (I have an M.A., so can teach college, but no credential to teach h.s.). I looked into it. My experience with education has been - give it 5 years and all of these teachers will be cut again and the cycle will repeat itself.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2016, 11:41:39 AM by lbmustache »

lbmustache

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #71 on: January 15, 2016, 11:41:24 AM »
I think I'm ready to make a change, but I feel like I need more education. I know you are probably asking why, but I feel like I can't exactly do what I want with what I currently have. Going back to school might be kind of dumb, but what are my alternatives? I would love to throw 100 percent of my income at that debt and get it taken care of in 5 years or less, but I don't think that's even possible, and what's worse, in the past when I've made sacrifices to try to save money, I ended up being uncomfortable and actually spending MORE. I have a problem. I don't tend to reason through my situations.

Yeah, I think we're all noticing that you operate from the gut, rather than reason. You seem like your response to being lost in the woods would be to run in some direction, ANY direction, rather than to sit still a moment to try to get your bearings and figure out which direction would be best.

At heart, I think what everyone here is telling you-- in one way or another-- is to STOP DOING THAT, because a) that's what got you into trouble in the first place, b) it is prone to getting you into more trouble, and c) it is not, in any way, shape, or fashion, going to be helpful in getting you OUT of trouble. You feel like, because you have a big problem, you need to solve it with something equally big! and fast! because it sucks to feel like this! This is not the case.

Consider what you were talking about when you said "I end up being uncomfortable and actually spending MORE"-- because learning to deal with discomfort without throwing money at it is at the heart of the philosophy around here. We use relatively mild discomfort (OH NO I CANNOT WATCH THE TV SHOW I WANT IMMEDIATELY / OH NO I HAVE TO MAKE MY OWN DINNER) as a tool to inoculate ourselves against things that are actually hard and bad. Think of it as curated discomfort-- a specific set of discomforts selected to increase your satisfaction in life, and your confidence, and your joy by learning to overcome them.

We live in a culture that is terrified of boredom and terrified of discomfort. We are no longer encouraged to entertain ourselves or to toughen up; we're encouraged to buy things that will solve the immediate problem, although at the cost of never letting us learn how to deal with it ourselves and never letting us learn patience by having to wait for things.

What we are telling you is to be still for a moment and just sort of sit with the discomfort. Sit with the discomfort of being $100K in debt. Sit with the discomfort of being dissatisfied with what you are doing. Sit with the discomfort of not having everything you want RIGHT NOW. Don't berate yourself for it, don't flail around for ways to fix it as fast as possible, just hang out with these discomforts and let them exist.


Then start making changes. Not drastic ones; we are asking you to start making your own smoothies, not OMG MUST SOLVE ENTIRE PROBLEM RIGHT NOW. The point here is to grow as a person, and, by doing so, transform your financial situation.

Going to school to solve your problems is a solution that you're comfortable with, but honestly it ain't all that. Employers are more impressed by "I am fluent in Spanish after living in Mexico for three years" than "I went to school to learn Spanish and I have a degree to prove it!", because the first indicates that you're a badass who can brave the confusion and discomfort of learning another language through use in the field, while the other indicates that you are comfortable with learning things in a classroom setting and writing papers.

Get comfortable with discomfort, delayed reward, and inconvenience. Start by making your own smoothies.

BAM! You said it the best. +1000.

BarkyardBQ

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #72 on: January 15, 2016, 11:50:44 AM »


What we are telling you is to be still for a moment and just sort of sit with the discomfort. Sit with the discomfort of being $100K in debt. Sit with the discomfort of being dissatisfied with what you are doing. Sit with the discomfort of not having everything you want RIGHT NOW. Don't berate yourself for it, don't flail around for ways to fix it as fast as possible, just hang out with these discomforts and let them exist.



And listen to some Alan Watts, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SHLGT2N7QXI

tomorrowsomewherenew

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #73 on: January 15, 2016, 01:16:37 PM »
I'm not looking for any "ethical" arguments, but what ReadySetMillionaire suggests is probably your best option, mathematically speaking. Look for higher paid positions in teaching. As your income creeps up, contribute to your 403b/457/whatever to keep your income low. You will be putting money away while simultaneously getting credit for your $0 student loan payments.

That's a very good idea. I would like more information on it.

The $0 per month payments are what I owe, so I am currently in repayment, not deferment.

I'm wondering if there's an option to go back to school and stay in repayment? My lender said that my loans would automatically go back into deferment, but I wonder if there is a way around this. A $0 per month balance on PSLF and IBR AND status as a student would be ideal. Do you think I could work out this deal with them? See, right now, I actually owe less on my loans while they're in repayment, because in deferment the $0 per month wouldn't be going toward my 120 consecutive payments.

I would suggest PMing ReadySetMillionaire as he is currently using this as his student loan repayment method.

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #74 on: January 15, 2016, 01:38:34 PM »
Well, in theory, I have ample opportunities to learn new languages, because I teach ESL and have several speakers of French, a few in Spanish, and a handful of Farsi speakers. In theory, I could do a language exchange with any of my students to gain enhanced language proficiency, but I'm likely not going to do that, because it's not something I should be doing and I wouldn't feel confident enough to try to communicate with them without being afraid of making mistakes. Learning it in school provides an easier more accepting atmosphere to practice. The language teachers and tutors are great, and many of them are native speakers. Plus, I just miss the other aspects of college life, like the free counseling and discounted everything. The bus pass was only $20, not $40. I could rent a bicycle, write for the paper, start a student club, etc. in addition to going to classes. I had ample opportunity to feel productive as a student, as an adult, not so much. My teaching jobs only take up a few hours of my day, and I feel like I haven't helped anyone at the end of it. There's so much I still want to learn.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2016, 01:42:46 PM by kmb501 »

EconDiva

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #75 on: January 15, 2016, 01:43:36 PM »

Another big expense is transportation costs. Recently, I had to pay $77 to get the tires changed.  The car has a problem that wears out the tires extremely quickly; I have to change them every six or so weeks. I've thought about just opting to take the bus to work, but that would mean I would have to get up 2 hours earlier for work.

I have never heard of this??? Also, what set of tires costs $77, unless they are all used (???).

I am going to be harsh. Bear with me.

A lot of your posts have a tone of not wanting to change. The, "I can't," mentality. "I could do X, but I don't want to." "Y makes sense, but I am comfortable doing A." "I tried Z, but like B a lot better."

You need to make a concentrated effort. A few posts ago you were asking about laser hair removal - which is understandable given the concerns you outlined - but now reveal you have a 100k debt that you want to get rid of. Unfortunately, these two things cannot exist together unless you make some crazy changes you might not like - living with a roommate and waking up an extra 2 hours early to take the bus. You received advice and turned down every single one (waxing, shaving, bleach, etc.) with an excuse. 

Your other post mentioned that you have almost $1500 a month that is not accounted for. You received some good advice but again, turned most of it down. You will need to create a budget and/or start tracking expenses carefully. I like Excel. Blonde on a Budget (google) has a pre-made template that is easy to use.

Basically you need to determine what is more important to you. The $5 lunches out, or tackling this debt and moving on the road to FI/RE.

This is not my thread, but I must say thank you.  I needed to read this today.

There are many of us that need this type of advice to 'push' us into realizing we are not doing all we can to be better.  That it takes a lot of EFFORT to see the kind of changes many of us want to see.  Just wanted to say thank you for being up front...plus you can tell you actually read and put thought into the OP's posts.  That's why I like this community; there are people here who actually care to help others out.

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #76 on: January 15, 2016, 01:49:42 PM »

Another big expense is transportation costs. Recently, I had to pay $77 to get the tires changed.  The car has a problem that wears out the tires extremely quickly; I have to change them every six or so weeks. I've thought about just opting to take the bus to work, but that would mean I would have to get up 2 hours earlier for work.

I have never heard of this??? Also, what set of tires costs $77, unless they are all used (???).

I am going to be harsh. Bear with me.

A lot of your posts have a tone of not wanting to change. The, "I can't," mentality. "I could do X, but I don't want to." "Y makes sense, but I am comfortable doing A." "I tried Z, but like B a lot better."

You need to make a concentrated effort. A few posts ago you were asking about laser hair removal - which is understandable given the concerns you outlined - but now reveal you have a 100k debt that you want to get rid of. Unfortunately, these two things cannot exist together unless you make some crazy changes you might not like - living with a roommate and waking up an extra 2 hours early to take the bus. You received advice and turned down every single one (waxing, shaving, bleach, etc.) with an excuse. 

Your other post mentioned that you have almost $1500 a month that is not accounted for. You received some good advice but again, turned most of it down. You will need to create a budget and/or start tracking expenses carefully. I like Excel. Blonde on a Budget (google) has a pre-made template that is easy to use.

Basically you need to determine what is more important to you. The $5 lunches out, or tackling this debt and moving on the road to FI/RE.

This is not my thread, but I must say thank you.  I needed to read this today.

There are many of us that need this type of advice to 'push' us into realizing we are not doing all we can to be better.  That it takes a lot of EFFORT to see the kind of changes many of us want to see.  Just wanted to say thank you for being up front...plus you can tell you actually read and put thought into the OP's posts.  That's why I like this community; there are people here who actually care to help others out.

I'm also very thankful for the advice provided to me on this thread. Some of you might think I'm arguing with you and dismissing these ideas, but I guess it's just the way I write. I'm actually paying attention and plan to implement most of the ideas you have suggested. 
« Last Edit: January 15, 2016, 01:51:22 PM by kmb501 »

Jakejake

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #77 on: January 15, 2016, 02:18:54 PM »
Well, in theory, I have ample opportunities to learn new languages, because I teach ESL and have several speakers of French, a few in Spanish, and a handful of Farsi speakers. In theory, I could do a language exchange with any of my students to gain enhanced language proficiency, but I'm likely not going to do that, because it's not something I should be doing and I wouldn't feel confident enough to try to communicate with them without being afraid of making mistakes. Learning it in school provides an easier more accepting atmosphere to practice. The language teachers and tutors are great, and many of them are native speakers. Plus, I just miss the other aspects of college life, like the free counseling and discounted everything. The bus pass was only $20, not $40. I could rent a bicycle, write for the paper, start a student club, etc. in addition to going to classes. I had ample opportunity to feel productive as a student, as an adult, not so much. My teaching jobs only take up a few hours of my day, and I feel like I haven't helped anyone at the end of it. There's so much I still want to learn.

It's cheaper to pay $40 for a bus pass and buy a bicycle than pay for college tuition. I wouldn't even raise those as justifications for going back to school.

If you don't feel like you are helping people at the end a day of teaching, that points to the solution others mentioned above - volunteering. You could volunteer with a group that helps refugees, immigrants, etc - and in that scenario it would be appropriate to help them while doing a language exchange, especially because them helping you in return is great for their sense of self. Just like you feel better about yourself if you are in a position to help others, so do others.

The part I bolded, that's the part I would focus on. How can you transition to finding productive ways of being an adult, instead of only being comfortable in the student role?

ooeei

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #78 on: January 15, 2016, 02:40:25 PM »
Plus, I just miss the other aspects of college life, like the free counseling and discounted everything. The bus pass was only $20, not $40. I could rent a bicycle, write for the paper, start a student club, etc. in addition to going to classes. I had ample opportunity to feel productive as a student, as an adult, not so much. My teaching jobs only take up a few hours of my day, and I feel like I haven't helped anyone at the end of it. There's so much I still want to learn.

Keep in mind these "discounts" and free things cost tuition money.  They aren't free at all.  I second (or is it third?) the advice above about looking in to volunteer work if you want to feel more accomplished.

Of course college is more fun than the real world, you're PAYING to do it!  Sure there's some work involved in studying and taking tests, but at the end of the day everyone in school wants you to succeed, and it's set up for you to do so.  That's not usually the case when someone is paying you to do something, they expect you to do the hard stuff regardless of the circumstances and complications that come up. 

Modeling/designing a house in a class and building a model is a ton of fun, and isn't necessarily easy, but it's nothing compared to building a house in the real world.  In the real world even though the builders showed up a week late, there was two weeks of rain that put off pouring the foundation, and two workers quit halfway through the job, you're still expected to deliver a finished house on time because someone is paying you for it.  When you're in college, you're the customer who everyone's trying to please at their own expense.  You may feel accomplished for learning things and get lots of pats on the back, but at the end of the day nobody's going to pay you to go and learn stuff in a classroom.  Even if they did, I imagine that job would be pretty competitive with all of the people who'd apply. 

If you constantly compare your life to college, it's going to be a tough ride. 

little_brown_dog

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #79 on: January 15, 2016, 02:47:41 PM »
If you constantly compare your life to college, it's going to be a tough ride.

Yup. And college at 30 is probably going to feel alot different than at 18. Most college students over the age of 24 are going to be working part time, full time, or caring for families. They won't be running around campus, making friends, and doing what the 18 year olds are doing. The fun, "let's go to the gym and then study and then get pizza and beer!" lifestyle probably won't happen.  This is totally okay. In fact, it would be a bit weird if you fell right back into the college lifestyle at an older and more mature age. College is a learning and growing experience...as in, you are supposed to grow out of it.

BarkyardBQ

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #80 on: January 15, 2016, 02:50:24 PM »
If you constantly compare your life to college... it's going to be a tough ride.



FTFY

pompera_firpa

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #81 on: January 15, 2016, 03:11:13 PM »
If you constantly compare your life to college, it's going to be a tough ride. 

TRUTH.

College is adulting for beginners. It's normal and natural to miss it; I think everyone I know has had some kind of minor (or major, in a few cases) breakdown in their mid-to-late 20s when it really hits home that you're not going to be automatically shuffled along to the next group organized by age, you're not going to be given further guidance without asking, and this whole business of being an adult is AWFUL.

Stop being afraid of making mistakes. You don't accomplish anything good in life without fucking up constantly for a while.

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #82 on: January 15, 2016, 03:28:11 PM »
If you constantly compare your life to college, it's going to be a tough ride.

Yup. And college at 30 is probably going to feel alot different than at 18. Most college students over the age of 24 are going to be working part time, full time, or caring for families. They won't be running around campus, making friends, and doing what the 18 year olds are doing. The fun, "let's go to the gym and then study and then get pizza and beer!" lifestyle probably won't happen.  This is totally okay. In fact, it would be a bit weird if you fell right back into the college lifestyle at an older and more mature age. College is a learning and growing experience...as in, you are supposed to grow out of it.

I'm planning to go back to school while working full time. I'll only have time to go to class in the evenings, on the weekends, or online. That "party lifestyle" was something I was never a part of, anyway. If I did hang out with young people, it would probably be to give them warnings and wisdom. I don't want to become a fixture, really, and I would be okay with online classes, if I could find any for foreign language.

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #83 on: January 15, 2016, 03:43:21 PM »
I downloaded a budgeting app, and it has been going to unnecessary purchases, mostly fast food. I eat out a lot, and I also make unnecessary shopping trips. An easy solution to this is to just leave the debit card at home and force myself to make changes to accommodate my new budget or go without. Sacrificing a day's pleasure is worth it in the long run, and eventually I would adjust to not being able to run out and order a pizza, burger, milkshake, or smoothie whenever I'm stressed.
Learn to cook more of the things you like, and take the sacrifice out of it. I'm all about having my cake and eating it too... I eat every bit as much delicious food as I did before MMM, I just make 95% of it myself, and I usually do it in bulk so I can take it along for lunches and snacks later.

I pay around $40 per month for internet access. I need to take a weekend and look up some recipes and tutorials for the foods I like to eat. It really makes a lot more sense than running to the deli for pre-made soups or sandwiches. It would probably be better for my health, too.

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #84 on: January 15, 2016, 03:47:36 PM »
Would you consider moving?

Clark County School District (all of southern NV) is still 700 teachers short.  They are voting on the new contract today and beginning teachers will start at $40,900 next year.  If you stay the 30 years and continue your education you will be able to top out at $90,877.

The cost of living is reasonable.  There are hundreds and hundreds of schools so if one isn't a good fit you have lots of options for something different.  Something to consider.

Same with Riverside county in California, where starting you can $50K+.

I am SO skeptical of this stuff. Teacher shortage. Everyone panics. Major hiring ensues. Orange County is doing the same thing - they are short teachers, and are even offering to pay for your credential while you teach (I have an M.A., so can teach college, but no credential to teach h.s.). I looked into it. My experience with education has been - give it 5 years and all of these teachers will be cut again and the cycle will repeat itself.

I already HAVE a master's in ESL and I SPEAK SPANISH (a little). I still doubt they would even consider hiring me. I would love to move and make a better salary. Plus, there's probably more to do in California than Alabama anyway. I just doubt my teaching ability quite a bit, though.

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #85 on: January 15, 2016, 03:55:17 PM »
If you constantly compare your life to college, it's going to be a tough ride. 

TRUTH.

College is adulting for beginners. It's normal and natural to miss it; I think everyone I know has had some kind of minor (or major, in a few cases) breakdown in their mid-to-late 20s when it really hits home that you're not going to be automatically shuffled along to the next group organized by age, you're not going to be given further guidance without asking, and this whole business of being an adult is AWFUL.

Stop being afraid of making mistakes. You don't accomplish anything good in life without (messing) up constantly for a while.

"Take chances, make mistakes, get messy..." ---Valarie Frizzle (Scholastic's Magic School Bus)

I get it, but I need to get started on actually getting out there and making mistakes. This playing it safe business is not for me. I constantly daydream about bigger and better things, and I think it gets in the way of the accomplishments I could make. I just feel more comfortable doing something with a group. I guess it's that herd mentality most humans adopt as children. I'm not a farm animal, though, and I would be willing to commit to something if I could only find two or three other people who are interested, too. I don't want to fall victim to any get rich quick schemes, but I'm having trouble accepting this slower pace. I'm really not comfortable just doing the same thing year after year. 

Now, I fully plan to save as much as I can or at least a lot more than I've been saving, because it will help me keep much better track of my money. As it stands, it's gone to pizza, burgers, and spur-of-the-moment purchases, some somewhat justifiable (like books for the kids) and some totally not, like a new skirt for $60. Some of these frugal lifestyle changes will also give me more fun hobbies, like perhaps sewing.

I think most of my wanting to go back to college is about not wanting to get old. I know I get older each year, but I feel strangely productive in school; it's like belonging to a cool club. Plus, there are some things I genuinely want to learn, but, ironically, even though I have a master's in Education I feel like teaching myself anything would be a daunting task; I have trouble finding the resources and breaking the lessons into manageable chunks, for one thing. I have no idea why I have so much trouble with this, and, oddly, it's one reason I pursued a teaching degree. I thought surely that curriculum design would have been part of the coursework, but that wasn't the case. I still view teaching myself as a difficult task, especially when I have no one to learn with.


« Last Edit: January 15, 2016, 04:15:11 PM by kmb501 »

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #86 on: January 15, 2016, 04:07:15 PM »
I think there's another elephant in the room that I neglected to mention in this thread. I got diagnosed at a student clinic, not by an actual doctor, with ASD, so my passions may be in fields that require great communication skills, but that's because I have and have had since I was a child, communication issues, issues that I badly want to overcome. At this age, I want to achieve the goals I've always wanted or work until I die trying, but if I want to accomplish anything, I need to make my goals more realistic and that means taking my limitations into consideration.
« Last Edit: January 15, 2016, 04:08:58 PM by kmb501 »

little_brown_dog

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #87 on: January 15, 2016, 04:10:32 PM »
Know that you are not alone in this feeling. We are trained from preschool on to always know where we are going. We become addicted to accomplishing measurable goals – grades, college acceptances, cum laude status, grad school, employment….and then, what? That’s it? We are stuck at employment? Sure promotions and job switches help keep things interesting, but it certainly isn’t the same as the linear progress we learned to crave while in school. Every single 20 something has felt this way at some point, and this is the feeling that always precedes really dumb decisions like going back to get yet another degree with more loans, or marrying someone you are just meh about because you are eager for the next step/phase in life. Heed the advice on here. Slow is not bad. The fact that you are uncomfortable with it means this is exactly the pace you need to be at to reorient yourself.
There are a million ways to add novelty to your life, switching careers is just one of them (and one of the most risky). Try new exercises or recipes each week. If you aren't partnered up force yourself to join online dating just for the hell of it and make yourself go on a bunch of dates. As others mentioned, volunteer. Your options really are only limited by your attitude and the fear of trying something new.

lbmustache

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #88 on: January 15, 2016, 04:26:29 PM »
Would you consider moving?

Clark County School District (all of southern NV) is still 700 teachers short.  They are voting on the new contract today and beginning teachers will start at $40,900 next year.  If you stay the 30 years and continue your education you will be able to top out at $90,877.

The cost of living is reasonable.  There are hundreds and hundreds of schools so if one isn't a good fit you have lots of options for something different.  Something to consider.

Same with Riverside county in California, where starting you can $50K+.

I am SO skeptical of this stuff. Teacher shortage. Everyone panics. Major hiring ensues. Orange County is doing the same thing - they are short teachers, and are even offering to pay for your credential while you teach (I have an M.A., so can teach college, but no credential to teach h.s.). I looked into it. My experience with education has been - give it 5 years and all of these teachers will be cut again and the cycle will repeat itself.

I already HAVE a master's in ESL and I SPEAK SPANISH (a little). I still doubt they would even consider hiring me. I would love to move and make a better salary. Plus, there's probably more to do in California than Alabama anyway. I just doubt my teaching ability quite a bit, though.

With a Master's you can teach college. They just make sure you have a master's degree, ask for your teaching philosophy, and you're more or less on your way. I started teaching college when I was 21 - so my students were pretty much my age or even older. Zero experience. Teaching public speaking. :P You only gain experience through practice and putting yourself through uncomfortable situations.

"A smooth sea never made a skillful sailor." ;)

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #89 on: January 15, 2016, 04:59:13 PM »
Would you consider moving?

Clark County School District (all of southern NV) is still 700 teachers short.  They are voting on the new contract today and beginning teachers will start at $40,900 next year.  If you stay the 30 years and continue your education you will be able to top out at $90,877.

The cost of living is reasonable.  There are hundreds and hundreds of schools so if one isn't a good fit you have lots of options for something different.  Something to consider.

Same with Riverside county in California, where starting you can $50K+.

I am SO skeptical of this stuff. Teacher shortage. Everyone panics. Major hiring ensues. Orange County is doing the same thing - they are short teachers, and are even offering to pay for your credential while you teach (I have an M.A., so can teach college, but no credential to teach h.s.). I looked into it. My experience with education has been - give it 5 years and all of these teachers will be cut again and the cycle will repeat itself.

I already HAVE a master's in ESL and I SPEAK SPANISH (a little). I still doubt they would even consider hiring me. I would love to move and make a better salary. Plus, there's probably more to do in California than Alabama anyway. I just doubt my teaching ability quite a bit, though.

With a Master's you can teach college. They just make sure you have a master's degree, ask for your teaching philosophy, and you're more or less on your way. I started teaching college when I was 21 - so my students were pretty much my age or even older. Zero experience. Teaching public speaking. :P You only gain experience through practice and putting yourself through uncomfortable situations.

"A smooth sea never made a skillful sailor." ;)

I really think a lot of those jobs, including teaching, require above average social skills. Perhaps that's where ASD is my greatest hindrance. In theory, I do have enough education to be an instructor at a college, but do I have the personality for it? That matters on a job interview. I want to look into it, though. Maybe one or two closed doors doesn't mean they are all closed.

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #90 on: January 15, 2016, 05:36:26 PM »
I really like the idea of riding a bike to work just for the exercise and fun of it, but does anyone have good suggestions for riding a bike in heavy traffic? I know I would need to order signaling equipment and headlights, and I would need to wear a helmet, but I also have concerns not related to visibility, such as not slowing traffic on my way back from work and keeping my shiny bicycle from getting stolen at work. I work at a detention center, you know. 

lbmustache

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #91 on: January 15, 2016, 05:57:02 PM »
Would you consider moving?

Clark County School District (all of southern NV) is still 700 teachers short.  They are voting on the new contract today and beginning teachers will start at $40,900 next year.  If you stay the 30 years and continue your education you will be able to top out at $90,877.

The cost of living is reasonable.  There are hundreds and hundreds of schools so if one isn't a good fit you have lots of options for something different.  Something to consider.

Same with Riverside county in California, where starting you can $50K+.

I am SO skeptical of this stuff. Teacher shortage. Everyone panics. Major hiring ensues. Orange County is doing the same thing - they are short teachers, and are even offering to pay for your credential while you teach (I have an M.A., so can teach college, but no credential to teach h.s.). I looked into it. My experience with education has been - give it 5 years and all of these teachers will be cut again and the cycle will repeat itself.

I already HAVE a master's in ESL and I SPEAK SPANISH (a little). I still doubt they would even consider hiring me. I would love to move and make a better salary. Plus, there's probably more to do in California than Alabama anyway. I just doubt my teaching ability quite a bit, though.

With a Master's you can teach college. They just make sure you have a master's degree, ask for your teaching philosophy, and you're more or less on your way. I started teaching college when I was 21 - so my students were pretty much my age or even older. Zero experience. Teaching public speaking. :P You only gain experience through practice and putting yourself through uncomfortable situations.

"A smooth sea never made a skillful sailor." ;)

I really think a lot of those jobs, including teaching, require above average social skills. Perhaps that's where ASD is my greatest hindrance. In theory, I do have enough education to be an instructor at a college, but do I have the personality for it? That matters on a job interview. I want to look into it, though. Maybe one or two closed doors doesn't mean they are all closed.

Forgive me, but I got lost somewhere. You teach currently, yes? You have a degree in Education, which you admitted was basically a straight path to teaching? And you want to go back to school for a language to teach ESL (more than what you currently teach)?

I am not trying to minimize ASD or anything like that but why are you suddenly shooting down teaching?

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #92 on: January 15, 2016, 06:06:09 PM »

Forgive me, but I got lost somewhere. You teach currently, yes? You have a degree in Education, which you admitted was basically a straight path to teaching? And you want to go back to school for a language to teach ESL (more than what you currently teach)?

I am not trying to minimize ASD or anything like that but why are you suddenly shooting down teaching?

It was VERY difficult for me to find a teaching position. I got many interviews, but I consider myself lucky that I finally found this one. Most of my interviews, including in high need areas, yielded few results, and my substitute teaching experience was a record of disaster. I'm beginning to understand that it wasn't all my fault, though, but ASD, I feel, has impeded my ability to manage an inclusion classroom, and if my potential employers found out I was a high-functioning autistic, they would probably not even consider me. The communication issues that come along with this disorder lend to a pretty poor skill set for teaching kids. Now, college may be another story, though.

mozar

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #93 on: January 15, 2016, 07:00:06 PM »
Quote
I could do a language exchange with any of my students to gain enhanced language proficiency, but I'm likely not going to do that, because it's not something I should be doing and I wouldn't feel confident enough to try to communicate with them without being afraid of making mistakes. Learning it in school provides an easier more accepting atmosphere to practice.

Trying things that you don't feel confident about is exactly how you become confident.

I think you need to get a formal diagnosis of ASD. Then you can access more types of help, government etc. Disability is protected, meaning that you can't be discriminated against for it in hiring and firing and your employer will be required to provide accommodation. If you start speaking openly about ASD employers might even admire your drive. And being disabled is not something to be ashamed of. It's merely a label (a poor one) that entitles you to more support. People fought for this label!

former player

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #94 on: January 15, 2016, 11:30:50 PM »
If you are getting "many interviews" that is a clear indication that your paper qualifications are not the problem, which means that more school is not the answer.  Which is good news.

Honestly, I think substitute teaching is a miserable way into the teaching profession, because you don't have the automatic authority of being a staff teacher, you don't have the opportunity to develop settled a relationship with a class, you don't have the opportunity to work out your own coherent implementation of the curriculum, and you are working against the relationships and curriculum established by another teacher in ways which are highly likely to be antithetical to the ways in which you would have done it.  So don't beat yourself up too badly about substitute teaching not being for you when you started out as a teacher.

You say that your current job is not heavy on hours.  Use the time and energy it leaves you to spare to work out how to do your current job better and better, and to get better and better results from your students.  That will give you knowledge, experience and success to build on.  That will come across in interviews, and get you better jobs.  Rinse and repeat until you have reached the level you are content with.

Good luck.


kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #95 on: January 16, 2016, 02:44:50 AM »
You say that your current job is not heavy on hours.  Use the time and energy it leaves you to spare to work out how to do your current job better and better, and to get better and better results from your students.  That will give you knowledge, experience and success to build on.  That will come across in interviews, and get you better jobs.  Rinse and repeat until you have reached the level you are content with.

Good luck.

How can I improve on anything without being taught?

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #96 on: January 16, 2016, 04:13:49 AM »
Wow,

I looked over my bank statements and discovered I made over $600 of unnecessary purchases in a month's time--mostly clothes and food. No, this is going to stop right now. I'm planning to skim off $600 from my next paycheck and invest it in a CD or something meaningful. It makes zero sense for me to throw away that much money every month.  I wasn't doing it when I didn't have it, so I don't need to do it now.

Plus, due to an accident on the school's part, all of the teachers were off for three days with pay. My sub license is active, so I actually could have worked for other schools during those three days I wasn't required to show up to work and could have made double the money for those days. I guess I just haven't been thinking.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2016, 04:28:16 AM by kmb501 »

former player

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #97 on: January 16, 2016, 04:15:05 AM »
You say that your current job is not heavy on hours.  Use the time and energy it leaves you to spare to work out how to do your current job better and better, and to get better and better results from your students.  That will give you knowledge, experience and success to build on.  That will come across in interviews, and get you better jobs.  Rinse and repeat until you have reached the level you are content with.

Good luck.

How can I improve on anything without being taught?
By teaching yourself.

kmb501

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #98 on: January 16, 2016, 04:21:27 AM »

By teaching yourself.

I agree, but that's actually difficult for me. This is going to sound silly, but no one ever taught me how to do that. I'm also bad at teaching myself to teach myself.
« Last Edit: January 16, 2016, 04:25:00 AM by kmb501 »

former player

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Re: Attacking Debt--suggestions?
« Reply #99 on: January 16, 2016, 04:24:07 AM »
That's understandable, but you are clever and I bet if you think about it and work at it, applying the professional knowledge you've already got to the problem, that you can get there.