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With $65,000+ of debt I'm on a mission to reach financial freedom. Follow along with my monthly updates to see how much debt I pay off, my income, my credit score, and the ups and downs I experience along the way! Get out of debt with me over at Living like Leila!

Welcome to my monthly debt analyses! This is where you’ll find links to detailed break downs of all of my debt. Each month I also share my credit score, income, and the good/bad things that happened financially throughout the month!

I am very transparent and open about my financial standing because I’m not afraid to share this information, hopefully it is beneficial to you. Read below for more about my journey and my financial goals!

July 2017 (Total Debt = $63,700): The Beginning
August 2017 (Total Debt = $64,827): +$1,126.63
September 2017 (Total Debt = $65,733): +$906
October 2017 (Total Debt = $65,353): -$379.67
November 2017 (Total Debt = $65,039): -$313.70
December 2017 (Total Debt = $64,639): -$399.80
January 2018 (Total Debt = $64,403): -$236.22
February 2018 (Total Debt = $64,375): -$27.97
March 2018 (Total Debt = $64,163.67): -$212.03
April 2018 (Total Debt = $64,739.12): +$575.45
May 2018 (Total Debt = $64,436.90): -$515.14
June 2018 (Total Debt = $82,200.14): +$383.24
July 2018 (Total Debt = $81,303.35): -$896.79
August 2018 (Total Debt = $79,858.98): -$1,444.37
September 2018 (Total Debt = $78,944.09): -$914.89
October 2018 (Total Debt = $77, 474.08): -$1,470.01
November 2018 (Total Debt = $76, 412.75): -$1,061.33
December 2018 (Total Debt = $74,748.49): -$1,664.26
January 2019 (Total Debt = $74,303.02): -$445.47
February 2019 (Total Debt = $73,683.13): -$618.89
March 2019 (Total Debt = $63,953.65): -$9,729.48
April 2019 (Total Debt = $62,605.65): -$1,348.00
May 2019 (Total Debt = $62,308.60): -$297.05
June 2019 (Total Debt = $60,552.28): -$1,756.32
July 2019 (Total Debt = $59,804.91): -$747.37
August 2019 (Total Debt = $60,404.68): +$599.77
September 2019 (Total Debt = $59,777.58): -$627.10
October 2019 (Total Debt = $58,888.12): -$889.46
November 2019 (Total Debt = $58,943.71): +$55.59
December 2019 (Total Debt = $57,356.90): -$1,586.81


January 2020 (Total Debt = $53,650.96): -$3,705.94
February 2020 (Total Debt = 52,895.86): -$755.10

My Debt Story

Exactly 6 months after I graduated with my Master’s, I got an e-mail from Navient, my student loan provider. I created a login and was taken to my ‘Account Summary.’ There was a list of my 11 subsidized and unsubsidized loans, totaling over $49,000. This was the start of my quarter-life crisis.

I did a little bit of research on repayment plans, and decided to choose the graduate repayment option. With this option, your minimum monthly payment will increase every 2 years (assuming your income and savings will increase).

Here’s what that would look like:

  • 24 months at $288
  • 24 months at $379
  • 24 months at $499
  • 24 months at $657
  • 24 months at $864

10 years and almost $15,000 of interest later my loan would be paid off.

I set up automatic payments (which reduces the interest rate by 0.25% by the way!) and the first will occur on August 13, 2017.

Here’s the thing…I hate the idea of carrying this debt on my shoulders for 10 years and I hate that I would spend an extra 15k in interest. Instead, my goal is to pay this off by the age of 30 (or by 2023)!

Here’s another thing…I have almost $6,000 of credit card debt AND I owe my sister about $6,500, both of which are still growing.

September 2018 Update: I’ve actually realized I can pay off ALL my debt in less than 4 years (by 2022). As of June 2018 my debt increased to over $80,000. If I put at least $1300 toward my debt each month, I can reach my new goal 🙂

It’s a lot.

It’s overwhelming.

It’s suffocating.

It’s stressful.

My dad tries to remind me to never get stressed. It’s hard though and I’m trying to stay positive. I decided to track my progress to motivate me, share my debt free journey, and maybe vent a little bit!

My top financial goals

#1: Get a new job

I am not making enough at my current job and considering I have my Master’s in biology I am qualified to work in a field with higher pay. Preferably, I would like a job with steady income (something my current job lacks), an annual salary, benefits, and weekends off!

September 2018 Update: I got a job as a microbiologist at a well-known, respectable institute in April 2018. My income has more than doubled (it is a salary), I get weekends off, and health insurance!

#2: Pay off all of my credit card debt by December 2018

Credit cards have saved me multiple times. I know a lot of people dislike them, but without them I wouldn’t have made it. Eventually, I want to get to the point where I purchase something with a credit card, take advantage of the rewards, then pay it off immediately to avoid interest charges.

April 2019 Update: I didn’t pay off all of my credit card debt by December 2018, but I did pay it all off as of March!!

#3: Pay off all my debt by 2022

Less than 4 years to pay off $80K. It’s doable. I may even be able to pay it off in less than 3 or 2 years depending on my income and my situation. We’ll see!

#4: Have $1,000,000 by 30

Yes, you read that correctly. I wanted to type out all the zeros because it’s even more exciting. Lofty goal? Maybe, but it’s something I’ve always aimed for. Basically, I want to be worth $1M by 30 between my life insurance policy, Roth IRA, and personal checking/savings account. This goal is 100% doable.

#5: Become financially free

This means a few things to me. By financially free I mean I want to have enough money to never feel burdened by financial problems. I want to be self-employed, work remotely, love what I do, and do whatever I want/need to do when I want to. I don’t want to wait until retirement for those things…the sooner the better.

These are big goals and it comes down to some super tight penny pinching plus making more and extra income. I’m determined to get through this!

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6 thoughts on “Monthly Debt Analysis – My Debt Free Journey

  1. I loved this post! As someone who spent years struggling with student loan debt, I can totally relate to what you’re going through. I think it’s AWESOME that you’re willing to share this kind of personal info to help others who are in the same boat. Congrats on the new job!! And I know you’re gonna meet your $1m goal on time! 🙂

    Posted on December 2, 2018 at 8:52 pm
    1. Thank you so much! I definitely hope it helps others because I read other people’s personal finance stories and they really inspire me.

      Thank you again 🙂

      Posted on December 4, 2018 at 1:35 am
  2. I love your blog. We can relate with so much especially with your financial goals. Slay girl I believe in you and support you!

    Posted on January 2, 2019 at 2:06 pm
    1. Thank you so much Jenny! I greatly appreciate the support ??❤

      Posted on January 3, 2019 at 1:47 pm