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Study focuses on reasons behind need for debt relief

Virtually all Connecticut residents have struggled with debt at some point in their lives. Whether debt comes from an unexpected medical issue, a college education or simply the need to replace a car engine, it can be stressful to live with the knowledge that those bills are out there, just waiting to be repaid. Many people are not even aware of how they got into serious debt problems. They seek debt relief services, which can relieve some of the pressure. That said, unless a consumer is fully aware of how he or she got into trouble in the first place, there is a significant likelihood that high debt will return in the years to come.

A recent article looks at the way that the human brain processes the concept of credit, and found that we may not have the ability to fully comprehend the concept of credit. At the root of the problem is the disconnect that occurs when someone pays for goods or services using a piece of plastic, rather than pulling out cold, hard cash. The idea is that when a person has a wallet that holds one's entire discretionary spending budget for a given period of time, there is a physical change that occurs when those bills are removed and handed over to pay for things. When a credit or debit card is used, that tangible reminder of depleted funds is simply not there.

Fortunately, there are ways to combat the detachment between one's budget and his or her spending. Using cash is one popular way to reduce excessive spending, but it is not always practical or safe to carry around large volumes of cash. Another tactic is to record each and every purchase for each day on a piece of paper, with a current bank account balance written clearly at the top of each page. That forces the consumer to acknowledge how much is in the account, and how each purchase takes away from that number as the day wears on.

Creating a physical reminder of one's budget is just one way to reduce spending and attack debt relief. In some cases, Connecticut residents will struggle to repay their financial obligations no matter how many tactics they employ. In such cases, it may be time to consider professional debt relief services, which can help consumers create and adhere to an effective debt management strategy.

Source: USA Today, "Stuck in debt? Don't feel bad. Your brain can't process the concept of credit", Jeff Stibel, July 14, 2017

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