Last Friday, Oprah aired a new show about her efforts to help American families who are living in a debt crisis. Unfortunately, that includes too many of us. If you are living with debt, whether it is a manageable or insurmountable amount, the stories of the families on Oprah’s show can be inspiring.
The show that aired Friday is the fourth in a series following families who are struggling with an overwhelming amount of debt. The surprise might be that on the outside, these families seem to be living very comfortably. They drive fancy cars, live in big houses, and wear designer labels. However, when you take a deeper look, these families are on the brink of financial disaster. Money problems have affected every area of their lives, and their marriages and family life are also in need of repair.
The Bradley family makes just over six figures a year, and yet they begin the debt diet with $170,000 worth of debt! The lady of the house, Lisa, tries at any expense to portray an image that she cannot afford. The family eats out for every meal, spending about $100 per day on food! So far in Oprah’s series, the family has learned to shop for and make their own meals, and Lisa has learned to replace her shopping habits with exercising.
The Widlund family consists of parents and two teenage daughters. The combined income for both parents is about $70,000 and their debt exceeds $100,000. The parents, Marnie and Mark, just cannot afford to keep up with the extravagant spending of their daughters. The daughters realize that they have their parents wrapped around their fingers. The girls admit that sometimes when there clothes are all dirty, they will go out and buy more. The family has made some important changes since the first show aired. Some of these include sticking to a grocery budget, and selling the girls’ surplus clothing at resale stores.
The Eggleston family had bankruptcy papers in the works when they began the debt diet. Now, they have committed to working through their money problems by paying off their credit cards–all 12 of them! They are now committed to sticking within a budget in order to pay down their $115,000 debt.
You can do it too.
If you have any amount of debt, perhaps the families of Oprah?s debt diet can inspire you to reduce your spending. To learn more about how to participate in the debt diet yourself, or to learn more about what these families, go to Oprah’s website.