Reflection, recognition and my gift to you

I really can’t believe quite how quickly the past week has gone.  Yes, there are Christmas preparations to make but I’ve been so busy with so many other things too.

It’s also quite a period of reflection for me.  This time last year I was seriously considering taking my own life.  Now I’m glad I didn’t but at the time it seemed like the only option.  Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could really see into the future?

I received a wonderful email this week from a lady in Australia who has subscribed to my FREE “A to Z of Bouncing Back from Bankruptcy“, here’s just a snippet of what she said to me

“Thank you for doing what you are doing for fellow bankrupts. It’s greatly appreciated. I’ve just started receiving your A—Z.

I found you via Twitter and am so relieved there is someone out there who understands the situation and the pain. There’s not much out there for bankrupts that ‘speaks’ to me, but your site & blog do. Thank you, thank you, thank you for being there.”

Receiving an email like this makes me feel that everything I went through was worth it.  I recall at the time, saying through gritted teeth and a set jaw ‘I’d better not be going through this in vain, as long as I can help just one person avoid this, then it will have been worth it’.  That was my sole motivator for writing the A to Z, creating this blog, my e-books and writing the various other courses that will be released in the New Year.  To receive this kind of feedback makes everything worthwhile.

In the past year I’ve been able to develop a consulting business which is now bringing me a small income.  I intend to escalate that in the New Year. It’s the income from that which has enabled me to provide the A to Z as a free gift.  However, it’s strange to think that without going through bankruptcy I would never have had the courage or confidence to set myself up as a consultant/advisor in any capacity.  It’s true what they say about there being strength in adversity.

I’m now in a position where I can look back on the past 3 years of my life and look at what I’ve learned from it.  I’m in a position of strength and positivity.  It’s taken the best part of 3 years to get to that position and if you’re not there yet, please don’t worry.  Eventually, you will come through that fog and you will look back and take some lessons from that period.  Even if it’s never to use a credit card again.  I know I’m dealing with some major money hangups at the moment but they’ll get sorted next year – I have problems spending these days which is the complete opposite to what I used to be!

The secret of surviving this route to recovery is to take things just one step at a time.  Even now I take a stumble back every so often, I fall into a shroud of worry, fear, anxiety and lack of confidence but I remain consistent in placing one foot in front of the other no matter how awful I feel and gradually I get myself back on track.  You can do the same too.

I know that at this time of year money worries are heightened and you can feel like you’re totally alone but believe me when I say that you’re not alone.  There are many, many people out there, around the World who will start the New Year worrying about how much they’ve overspent.  It’s far better to have a quieter, less flamboyant Christmas period and start the New Year feeling bright and confident about the future.

Take some time out today just to sit and think about just how far you’ve already come along the Bankrupt’s Route to Recovery.  If you haven’t signed up to the A to Z of Bouncing Back from Bankruptcy then do so now, it’s my gift to you and it will help you put one foot in front of the other and give you support when you need it.

In the meantime, have a Great Christmas with family, friends and loved ones, knowing that the most valuable gift you can give is your time.

Merry Christmas

Deb

xx

 

Sounds familiar?

It’s always good to receive feedback that tells you you’re on the right course. Since writing about bankruptcy and publishing my courses and e-books I’ve really felt that I’m finally doing what I’m supposed to be doing, or what I’ve been put on this earth to do so when I get feedback from one of my course subscribers that affirms that it really drives me forward to want to continue to help more of you to cope with bankruptcy and financial difficulty.

At the end of the course I ask my subscribers to tell me their own personal experience of bankruptcy so far, and what drove them to take my course and what they got out of it.

The following is an email I received from a course subscriber after they had completed the course.  The only changes I have made is to remove the person’s name (I always promise total confidentiality and anonymity).  Isn’t it good to know that everyone’s story is different but we’re all in the same boat?

“I’m not bankrupt, but it’s looking as if it’ll be imminent which is why I signed up for the A to Z of Bouncing Back from Bankruptcy“.

So how did it happen – well I applied for a mortgage as a self employed person based on earnings which weren’t realistic and there was no check and was allowed the mortgage. It coincided with the first financial crash in 2008 and my earnings dropped to almost nil. I rented out the property and then chose to sell it. The tenants didn’t want to be in a property which was being sold. They left. The lending company wouldn’t let me rent it out, the property didn’t sell, in spite of massively reducing the sale price (albeit maybe too late). The property was repossessed and I’m still being charged for the interest only mortgage in spite of not having any control over the future of the sale of the property.
In the interim period, I racked up credit card debt to keep my business going and cover daily basic living costs. The long and the short. Time ran out, limits were reached.  I now live with my parents, which has turned out well as I’m in my 50s and they’re both needing care – we’re looking out for one another.
I am unable to become bankrupt until the property sells as otherwise, it’ll be adding further debt which I believe isn’t permissible!  It’s a joke. And I’d be very happy to be bankrupted by the mortgage company, yes I’m responsible for applying for the mortgage, but really feel I shouldn’t have been given it. Ah the benefits of hindsight!
What I hope to get out of it is a clean break. If it doesn’t happen, it doesn’t happen and I’ll muddle along and do my best to repay what I can.”
What this subscriber also went on to tell me in a separate telephone conversation is that they now feel bankruptcy isn’t so frightening and that if it is the route that they end up going down they feel better prepared to handle it.
For just 16p a day this person now has the confidence to face up to whatever is going to happen to them.  How could the A to Z of Bouncing Back from Bankruptcy help you?
Have a great weekend and please, don’t panic about your financial situation. Take a look at my website or drop me an email to deb@deborah-meredith.com.  You don’t have to handle this alone.

Don’t let your past dictate your future…..

As I sit here, frustrated from enforced bed-rest (I’m not seriously ill but bad enough to do some lasting damage if I don’t heed Doctor’s orders), it’s giving me plenty of time to ponder on how life has changed in the past few years.  In fact, to be honest, it’s changed quite dramatically in just a few short months.

Two years ago I was declared bankrupt.  The only thing that stopped me throwing myself off the cliff I now live on top of was my then 4-year old son.  All that kept me moving forward was the thought “What will my son think of me for leaving him?  How will it affect him in the future?”

I have no idea from where I summoned the strength to carry on, and even today, when I have a down day as we all do occasionally, I wonder if I can still carry on.  Thankfully those days are becoming less and less and the past two years have taught me how to cope.  I’ve developed a super-structure of family and friends that supports me and most importantly doesn’t judge me.  And they have no idea how much they bolster me when the vultures (and there are still plenty of them out there, I’m sure you’ve got some of your own, who want to see you fail and are happy to humiliate you no matter what the cost) seem determined to undermine me or try to topple me over the edge of the cliff.  There was a time when the vultures almost won but thanks to my super-structure I’m still here.

I’ve wandered down routes that at times have been dead-ends, others have just been ridiculously stupid and some, well, I should have known better but at the time of deciding which route to go down I took that decision based with all the knowledge and experience I had available to me at that point.  Maybe one day I’ll write a book because sometimes I really can’t quite believe how I got from there to here.  Maybe I’ll explore that through this blog, or if you join me on one of my e-courses, we’ll explore it further then.

When I was in the depths of despair of bankruptcy the one thing that I kept saying was “No-one should ever have to go through this alone and they won’t – if it’s the last thing I do”.  That seemed like a grand statement at the time, just one of those grandiose things you say to make everyone around you think that you’re coping.  Yeah, right!  Like I was really pulling the wool over their eyes with my bluff and bluster!

But, with some encouragement and cajoling I’m almost ready to launch my e-courses to help those affected by bankruptcy, bad debt or in dire financial straits.  I’m not going to tell anyone how to budget better or rebuild their credit history, Lord knows I’m still working through that myself, but what I’m aiming to do is offer the emotional support that was missing when I needed it.  Look up “surviving bankruptcy” or any similar search string on google and you’ll find page upon page of hints and tips to save money, do more with less, etc, etc, but you’ll find next to nothing on what it’s like to go through bankruptcy and come out the other end.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m no guru or expert but as no-one else seems prepared to talk about it, I felt I should.  Quite why I don’t know, but discussing quite how low, dirty and unworthy bankruptcy makes you feel with someone who hasn’t been through it doesn’t really help.  It makes you feel as if the other person, whilst empathetic, is judging you.  I now know they’re not but try telling that to someone who is drinking water, not because they’re on a health kick but because they can’t afford a glass of wine or a cup of coffee.  Or to the person who has suddenly fallen in love with ‘Vintage clothing’ (read charity shop bargains or freecycle freebies) after years of buying top quality, top priced clothing because it’s sustainable and good for the environment!

So, where am I now, 2 years down the line? Well, my address history is improving; instead of 9 changes of address in 2 years I now have just 2 different addresses for the past 2 years (every little helps).  I am self-employed and happy, I have learned to accept myself and have rebuilt my confidence and self-esteem, I see my son every weekend and I’m in a loving relationship with a wonderful man.

Everything started to fall into place as I made some changes to my life and my mindset and things are now coming together nicely.  There’s still a way to go, I’ve got another 4 years of being a “discharged bankrupt” to get through yet, but I have to be honest and say if they carry on like this, it’s not going to have been such a bad thing to happen after all.  If only I’d realised it at the time.

My e-courses will be launching soon and I hope you’ll join me on “The Bankrupt’s Route to Recovery“.

Deb