Last night I dreamed that I had to go to jail. It seems (in the dream) that I made a charge on my credit card when I didn't have the cash to cover my purchase. Thus I had to go to jail.
In this dream, I didn't know how long I'd be in jail. I didn't know what I was going to do. It seemed to be a minimum-security place, but my freedom was gone.
Now, I am pretty sure I know where the dream came from; I stayed up late, trying to finish the murder mystery book I had checked out from the library.
The dream got me thinking, though. We don't have credit card debt; we pay ours off monthly, and really the main reason we use our credit card is because we get cash-back rewards from it. But I've heard that the average American carries nearly $10,000 in credit card debt. This means that most people we deal with every day have exactly the scenario that I dreamed about; they make purchases on their credit cards that they do not have the cash to cover.
Because of their debt, they are imprisoned. They cannot do what they want to; they can't go where they want to; they can't buy the things they want. I have a humorous image in my mind of Napoleon Dynamite and his Uncle Rico at the store; Napoleon brought a package of chips to the checkout, and Uncle Rico snaps, "You know we can't afford the fun pack! Now go put it back. And grab some pampers for you and your brother!"
Though that's a funny scene (mostly in its embarrasment factor for Napoleon in front of the most popular girl in school), the truth is that many people "can't afford the fun pack" or anything else, for that matter. Credit card debt has them in prison.
So the point of this: if you're deep in debt, cut up the credit cards. make a budget and stick to it. You don't need all the newest and latest gadgets and fashions. You don't need another new car. You can get out of the prison of credit card debt!