The most interesting discovery I had in 2010 was the realisation that getting out of debt & living within your means has about 25% to do with practical information – and 75% to do with mindset.

I know I’m getting in a bit deep here, but stick with me. In 2010, I sat down with the good, the bad, & the ugly.

The “Good” are mortgage-free, or very close to being mortgage-free. This is a great place to be.  I’ve noticed they have little financial stress in their lives –  even in a tough recession.

The “Bad” have just been a bit misinformed/careless.  But, with some good advice, they get back on the horse and off they go.

Now, let’s get to the “Ugly“. What I mean by the “Ugly” is people in deep financial trouble –  but not willing to listen to reason. Always wanting the quick fix. The sticky plaster solution that just doesn’t work long-term…

I can generally tell within minutes whether or not someone is doomed financial. Sadly, some will never get out of a life of debt, paying banks, credit card companies & creditors thousands over their lifetime in interest & penalty charges –  because they can’t take control.

Others have had enough. They’re uncomfortable with the level of debt they have. They’re prepared to listen to practical advice to get them out of debt. It’s like switching on a light inside them – they just make the changes needed.

One area that  fascinates me is that most people I meet do not think their mortgage is a debt. Try not paying your mortgage for a few months – you soon know who owns your house, and it isn’t you!

Allan Matthew Cuthbert t/a Financial Wellbeing is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland to advice on Mortgage,Savings, Life and Pension products