Finding out your net worth can be both challenging and disappointing at the same time.

Recently, I started using Quicken (again) to keep track of my finances. The application was easy to learn and use and there is also an option there to find out your net worth which sparked my curious (yet slacking) mind. I really find it convenient to use accounting software for managing finances ever since running into Quickbooks in my previous job.

So I ran the “getting started” wizard and placed all (or most) of the needed information. I then started to gather my recent payslips, list of bank accounts and statements, credit card balances and other finance-related stuff which turned out to be a half-day task for a disorganized, non-accountant like myself. I was lucky I did keep them all together in a single folder but that file was somehow buried somewhere in my personal space.

By saying files and folders I meant an actual, physical folder with real pieces of paper in it and not soft copies found on a hard drive. “Elusive” was the word of the day but I was a man with a mission and nothing could stop me from finding out my net worth. I found it somewhere underneath a pile of magazines and old “unclaimed-scanned-photos” box and then got back to my PC.

So after three hours of internet-free PC work (yes, my “high-speed” smartBro connection is not working as I forgot to pay the damn thing), I managed to get a glimpse of what my net worth is.

Sadly, it turns out I’m in the red after placing all my debts and bills. I haven’t finished enumerating my “assets” (not plenty at all) and all my income streams on the list yet so maybe that will change
by just a bit.

However even if I finish putting in all my assets and income streams the results will still reflect that I’m more into debt than I actually thought. But exactly how does one keep all their debt manageable? You have bills, credit cards, credit cooperatives, your mom, brother and best friend and keeping track of all these manually can be a very boring chore.

Getting out of debt can be a very steep climb. It’s like falling into a dried out well and then trying to climb out with one hand tied behind your back. But even if your debt looks more than you can handle, no matter how complex everything may seem, there will always be a way out.

Believe me, I know I have debts, but it wasn’t until I actually wrote everything down where I could see it all in-my-face, was when I really saw the “big picture”.

On the lighter side, not having any debt can sometimes be a bad thing. It can either mean you’re filthy rich, which is rarely the case for most of us slackers, or you are not in a position to be lent anything at all as you have a bad credit standing.

The past few months has been very difficult as I had to make regular payments for each loan as I wait for my next “big” project which will put me back in the green. The inevitable regular loan payments has greatly affected my “cash flow” (if you can still call it flowing). I not a big spender. I hate shopping and never had that addiction, I don’t gamble or party real hard but certain events in the past year has forced me to max out my credit cards and have me take on a few loans.

There is no instant solution to debt much like with weight problems. You can start losing weight, by consuming fewer calories than we are used to burning up and debt cannot get any worse if you stop spending too much than you can afford.

Here’s my gameplan;

  • Keep spending to a bare minimum. Buy only what is absolutely necessary.
  • Cut down on basic utilities like electricity, gas and other costs.
  • Find more income streams (both passive and active).
  • Slowly approach a strategy to finally get rid of debt (Paying it all back).

I am hoping my cash flow improves in the next few months as I get my debt down to a more manageable level. This is also as I start to monetize a few more blogs and setup a few dozen website ideas I am thinking of.