Roughly six months have passed since I paid off $90k of student debt in seven months and almost 13 months have passed since I launched No More Harvard Debt. I think we can all agree that it’s been one hell of a ride! (I literally had a grin on my face as I typed that last sentence.)
I sat down at my computer on August 29th, 2011 to introduce a story to friends and family about how I was going to try to pay off my $90k of student debt in ten months with a 12-month after-tax salary of around $74k. I picked up quite a few readers along the way, and the audience became far greater than I ever anticipated it would. What started as a simple story to my friends and family turned into a personal growth-and-development adventure for myself and an inspiration for strangers. My blogroll includes a few examples of those who have been inspired, and I encourage you to check them out.
Using the written word to inspire complete strangers to take steps to improve their lives is incredibly special, and I’m so glad that this odyssey evolved into the opportunity to help others. When I take stock of my life 50+ years from now and try to measure it, this experience will definitely be a significant part of the highlight reel. I’m forever indebted to the readers and media who helped spread the word and inspiration.
This will be my last post for the foreseeable future. It’s taken me several hours to write this short article as I search for the right words because this is not a decision I make lightly. I love to write and I’m more passionate about personal finance than I ever thought I could be. Unfortunately, once I paid off my student debt, this blog lost direction. That’s tough for me to openly admit because I’ve been in denial mode for so long, but that denial has become harder and harder to sustain during the past few weeks. If I were to write about trying to pay off my mortgage in two years, selling everything and sailing around the world, or signing up for Peace Corps and trading in my corporate badge ID for a shovel, then I think that this blog would deserve a new lease on life. However, the truth is that my current financial rule is to to save 50% of my income as I continue to develop my career. While this 50% rule isn’t widely followed by most, it’s not especially inspirational, either, and it certainly isn’t blog-worthy.
I’ll continue to carefully monitor my spending, live below my means, and build up my savings because it feels good. I’m going to take the next year to focus on my career and live my life. After that, all bets are off, and we might even meet again.
If you’re new to this blog and want to be inspired, don’t despair! The silver lining in all of this is that I’ll keep the blog online to serve as a beacon of hope for those who are buried in student debt or are considering taking on loans to fund their education. The About page is a good place for new readers to start.
I’ll close by saying thank you. Thank you for following my story and thank you for adding your positive commentary and encouragement along the way. I want to give a special thanks to Sweta, iowenomore, ryanfield1, rosiedancer, MJ, and JaneMD for their meaningful contributions.
I truly value what we’ve built here together. I’ll miss you all.