First win! After working hard for a month at following my budget and earning money with my side job, I was able to make the last payment on my first student loan! Now in fairness, it wasn’t a particularly huge sum of money, but it’s gone!

The idea behind the debt snowball is that you put your debts in order from least to greatest amount and pay off the smallest first. While some might argue in favor of paying down the debt with the highest interest first (and in fairness, it does save you money in interest), paying down the smaller balances helps keep up your motivation. Like Dave Ramsey says, winning the game of money is about behavior, not math.

One of the tools I’ve been using on this debt journey is the trackers I found from Rachel Cruze (she’s Dave Ramsey’s daughter, if you’re not familiar). I think visual reinforcement is really helpful when working toward any goal and debt payoff is no different. The trackers give you the satisfaction of seeing your progress and provide motivation to keep working hard. She has a tracker designed for building an emergency fund as well as paying off different forms of debt like credit cards, cars, and student loans. You can find her trackers here.

Here’s to getting more of these in 2019!