Author Topic: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting  (Read 2184 times)

Malkynn

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Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« on: November 06, 2019, 07:20:04 AM »
Feeling pretty badass today.

As of this morning, my student loan balance is $0.
When DH and I got together, we had A LOT of debt combined, the bulk of which was mine from 11 years of university.

It would have been fine, I could have paid it all off within 4 years while also saving substantially in tax deferred accounts, as we both had 6 figure incomes, mine more than double his.

Then quickly, my career fell apart.
Actually, that's a lie, my career was rockin', but I fell apart...literally. 

I know now that I have a rare genetic disease that makes my career a TERRIBLE IDEA that literally rips my body apart from the inside.
Fuuuuuck

This means I urgently had to downshift and take a huge pay cut if I wanted to be able to continue working...or, y'know, regain the ability to lift my right arm, no big deal.
[Truthfully, at the time I had no idea how serious the damage was, medical professionals are amazing at ignoring pain. I honestly saw the downshift as temporary...Ugh...so dumb]

I've now smartened up a little bit and turned the Titanic of my career around by focusing on a sub-specialty that I actually enjoy more, by treating severe pain patients...Hmm..wonder why I like that so much?

Since our monthly debt payments always eclipsed our life spending, this means that our overall expenses have immediately been cut in less than half.

A side benefit of all of this FUCKING DEBT is that it forced us into a frugal life, which we eventually learned to really enjoy. 5-6 years ago we would daydream about all of the lifestyle inflation we could afford once the debt was gone and our hundreds and hundreds of thousands in income were at our disposal...now we live in a 1 bedroom apartment, which is the "dream home" we just moved to from a 3 story town house.

The FUCKING DEBT may have felt like a god damn albatross, but that shit has taught me more about myself, my life, my health, and my happiness than I could have learned in a lifetime of having a normal career like a damn normal person.

DH asked me this morning how my first day of freedom felt, and I replied: "I'm really looking forward to getting to know who I am without constantly being concerned about cash flow"

I left home as a teenager. I was a student for my entire 20s. My career has been chaos. Worrying about cash flow has been sewn into the very fabric of my being.

I look very forward to growing into the kind of person that I can be now without that ever present pressure eating up so much of my psychic energy.

420K dragon slayed. It's a good day.
« Last Edit: November 06, 2019, 07:22:03 AM by Malkynn »

MrDelane

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2019, 07:22:03 AM »
Congratulations seems like such a small word in the face of such an accomplishment.
But for what it's worth... congratulations.

:)

UnleashHell

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2019, 07:47:59 AM »
congrats slayer!!

ender

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2019, 07:57:04 AM »
I love this!

dandarc

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2019, 08:11:28 AM »
Congratulations!

Ch@d

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2019, 08:20:50 AM »
You're definitely a badass Malkynn.  Well done!

Peony

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #6 on: November 06, 2019, 08:38:10 AM »
Well done!

BECABECA

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #7 on: November 06, 2019, 08:47:19 AM »
That’s so awesome! I hope you do something special to mark today, so you can remember exactly how wonderful you feel today years from now. When my NW crossed 1m after selling my Bay Area house, I had a fun call with my sister and I shotgunned a beer (hadn’t done that since college days). I have the picture that I texted her of the empty can and I see it now and then and my mind immediately goes back to that feeling.

I love that you’re seeing the benefits that have come from a bad thing (the FUCKING DEBT). I’ve only recently been exposed to that concept of finding gratitude for what bad things in our lives have taught us or how they’ve helped spark us to make good changes. Reframing that has been eye opening for me.
« Last Edit: November 06, 2019, 08:49:46 AM by BECABECA »

Villanelle

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #8 on: November 06, 2019, 09:19:18 AM »
So badass!  Not just the debt pay-off and frugality, but the adaptability and the positive outlook. 

Congratulations.

mm1970

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #9 on: November 06, 2019, 01:06:55 PM »
This is amazing, and badass, and go you!!

YoungGranny

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #10 on: November 06, 2019, 01:14:29 PM »
Congrats, what a badass!

honeybbq

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #11 on: November 06, 2019, 01:56:11 PM »
Wow, quite incredible.

As a medical professional with golden handcuffs... I am envious.

Life in Balance

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #12 on: November 06, 2019, 02:34:31 PM »
Congratulations!!  Enjoy the feeling.  It's amazing how hard things can shape our outlooks in positive ways.

GreenToTheCore

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2019, 12:45:56 AM »
You just bought $420,000 of freedom!


Linea_Norway

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2019, 05:51:15 AM »
Congrats. Is that the reason why you can now downsize to working one size a week (like you wrote in another thread)?

Adventine

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #15 on: November 07, 2019, 05:57:50 AM »
Amazing work. Truly well done.

DH asked me this morning how my first day of freedom felt, and I replied: "I'm really looking forward to getting to know who I am without constantly being concerned about cash flow"

Keep us posted on the good (and bad) realizations you have along the way. I've never had any debt, but I'm not FIRE yet, and I do wonder fairly often what kind of person I will become after I no longer have to work for a living.

EscapedApe

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #16 on: November 07, 2019, 10:55:25 AM »
Now that's how you turn a life negative into a big fat life positive. Congrats on the accomplishment and the solid attitude.

I've always believed that carrying over frugal habits from a low-income life to a higher-income life is the key to contentedness and eventual freedom. Looks like you've verified that.

LifeHappens

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #17 on: November 07, 2019, 11:08:30 AM »
Congrats Malkynn! Like many here, I've benefited so much from your posts. I'm happy we can celebrate your freedom from student loans with you.

Malkynn

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #18 on: November 07, 2019, 04:56:28 PM »
Thank you everyone for the congrats and encouragement.
It's been a bit surreal not to have it occupying my thoughts constantly.

One thing I've learned many times over in my life is that the absence of a previously powerful negative force is an odd form of happiness that needs to be passively observed for a time in order to be fully appreciated.

I'm in that process now.

Malkynn

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #19 on: November 07, 2019, 04:59:34 PM »
Congrats. Is that the reason why you can now downsize to working one size a week (like you wrote in another thread)?

Absolutely.

...although, my health doesn't give me much of a choice either.

Linea_Norway

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #20 on: November 08, 2019, 05:03:35 AM »
Congrats. Is that the reason why you can now downsize to working one size a week (like you wrote in another thread)?

Absolutely.

...although, my health doesn't give me much of a choice either.

Sorry to hear that last part. I still hope you can spend your extra day off in some way you enjoy, despite your health challenges.

brandon1827

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #21 on: November 08, 2019, 08:24:38 AM »
Such an amazing post and wonderful story. I am now where you were...but hopefully on my way to also seeing what life is like without that debt chain hanging around my neck and essentially dictating everything in my life. My wife and I, much like you and your spouse, have dreamed of all we'd be able to do without the debt and the resulting left over "disposable" income...but our collective mindset is slowly starting to shift...and it's a wonderful feeling. My wife still dreams big of things she wants to purchase, but she's starting to see that we don't need those things to be happy. Congratulations on your debt payoff!

HenryDavid

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #22 on: November 08, 2019, 09:08:49 AM »
The material part of this victory, slaying the debt so expeditiously, is amazing. Lots of people would call that impossible. But it ain’t.

And yet, the mental victory—arriving at a really fruitful state of mind and staying there in the face of waaay too many slings and arrows of outrageous Fortune—is True Badassity on an epic level. Sharing what you’ve learned, so effectively, with so many other people, kicks it up another several notches.

Inspiring. Please continue.

Malkynn

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #23 on: November 08, 2019, 05:29:07 PM »
Congrats. Is that the reason why you can now downsize to working one size a week (like you wrote in another thread)?

Absolutely.

...although, my health doesn't give me much of a choice either.

Sorry to hear that last part. I still hope you can spend your extra day off in some way you enjoy, despite your health challenges.

It's okay.

My illness doesn't so much limit my ability to live a full life, and it doesn't even limit my ability to work; however, my work is not advisable as my illness makes it extremely, unbelievably easy for me to get injured and my job is famous for how hard it is on the body.

So basically, if I continue to work...well...my future won't be very pleasant as I'll end up as mangled as some of those Cirque de Soleil performers who will never walk properly again.

As long as I quit this nonsense now, I should be relatively okay.

Focus_on_the_fire

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #24 on: November 09, 2019, 08:07:32 AM »
Your story is amazing! It sounded like one heck of a wake-up call and unlike most folks you guys addressed it head on. I wish you all the best.

brunetteUK

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #25 on: November 09, 2019, 08:45:55 AM »
Well done Malkynn!!!

Enjoy the next step of "cashflow? what's that? why people worry?"!!

Adventine

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #26 on: November 09, 2019, 09:49:53 AM »
Congrats. Is that the reason why you can now downsize to working one size a week (like you wrote in another thread)?

Absolutely.

...although, my health doesn't give me much of a choice either.

Sorry to hear that last part. I still hope you can spend your extra day off in some way you enjoy, despite your health challenges.

It's okay.

My illness doesn't so much limit my ability to live a full life, and it doesn't even limit my ability to work; however, my work is not advisable as my illness makes it extremely, unbelievably easy for me to get injured and my job is famous for how hard it is on the body.

So basically, if I continue to work...well...my future won't be very pleasant as I'll end up as mangled as some of those Cirque de Soleil performers who will never walk properly again.

As long as I quit this nonsense now, I should be relatively okay.

Maybe I missed this somewhere - @Malkynn what is this job and why is it so hard on you?

Malkynn

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Re: Paid off 420K in under 6 years while downshifting
« Reply #27 on: November 09, 2019, 11:10:38 AM »
Congrats. Is that the reason why you can now downsize to working one size a week (like you wrote in another thread)?

Absolutely.

...although, my health doesn't give me much of a choice either.

Sorry to hear that last part. I still hope you can spend your extra day off in some way you enjoy, despite your health challenges.

It's okay.

My illness doesn't so much limit my ability to live a full life, and it doesn't even limit my ability to work; however, my work is not advisable as my illness makes it extremely, unbelievably easy for me to get injured and my job is famous for how hard it is on the body.

So basically, if I continue to work...well...my future won't be very pleasant as I'll end up as mangled as some of those Cirque de Soleil performers who will never walk properly again.

As long as I quit this nonsense now, I should be relatively okay.

Maybe I missed this somewhere - @Malkynn what is this job and why is it so hard on you?

Thanks to someone really fucking creepy who might be reading this, I don't share specifics anymore. Although, anyone with a bit of time can go back and figure it out.

Regardless, I do a very physical job which is famous for causing severe repetitive strain injury in healthy bodies, so being extremely vulnerable to injury makes my work terrible for me. I may never recover from the injuries I've sustained from work.