Now that I have wrapped up all the interviews with all 8 M-Network members other than myself, I decided to expand the series a little and include all the friends of the M-Network who participate in our group projects and forums. First up this week is former M-Network member Ana from DebtFREE-Revolution. Good to have you “back” Ana!
So Ana, when did you start DebtFREE-Revolution and why?
The official first post was on July 4th, 2007. I felt that was a very appropriate day to start a blog with “Revolution” in its title LOL I originally started it because I was attending the retapings of Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University video lessons down in Nashville, and felt it was a great way to let people know what I saw there. That, and I had been toying with setting up a blog to chronicle my journey to get out of debt. Then I discovered there was a PF blogosphere, and wanted to play too!
How much time do you spend each week on your site?
It depends on how inspired I am and whether or not I have an organic chemistry test coming up! Or an organic chem lab report due. I don’t have a set posting schedule, as my regular readers will tell you, although when I do post it’s around what is considered lunch time in central time zone (US). I just sit down and write what comes to mind for a post. I honestly don’t do much research, since most of my posts are my opinion LOL and I’m an expert on my opinion. When I’m on semester break I tend to look things up more often.
For other people contemplating starting their own personal finance sites, what are a few tips you could offer them?
Write as if you were talking to someone, because you are: your readers. My posts are exactly the way I would say things, and will mix “ten dollar words” with “Southernisms” and tend to be almost stream-of-consciousness. I personally feel a blog is a conversation between the blogger and the readers, and will often converse with readers in my comments section. The only censoring I do of myself is to take out the “colorful language” (cuss words) I learned in the Army, the factories I worked at, and of course from helping my dad work on cars when I was kid.
What are the most essential habits that you’ve formed to achieve your financial goals?
BUDGETING, BUDGETING, and BUDGETING!!! I can’t stress enough how much learning how to make a workable realistic budget has helped! It helped me get my family out of consumer debt in about 14 months, and it will help us save up a big emergency fund over the spring! Oh, did I mention BUDGETING?
What achievement are you most proud of in the last 12 months?
I’m DEBT FREE BUT THE HOUSE, baby!!!! Official debt-free date is February 26th, 2008. I’ve been celebrating that for a week now, and still haven’t quite come down to earth yet LOL Everyone should give it a try. It feels GREAT! And let’s face it, if you don’t like being debt free, there are 1001 ways to go back into debt.
What would you consider the single most important thing people can do for their finances?
That’s a tie:
1. Get out of debt and STAY out of debt! I’ve even gone so far as to adopt that as my blog’s slogan.
2. Have I mentioned how helpful BUDGETING is???
If you had to pick three of your own posts to call your “favorites”, which would they be?
No fair!! Truly, I suck at picking which posts are “bests” and even moreso at picking favorites. They are all my thoughts. I could name at least twenty right now that are my favorites today. By next week it would be a different twenty posts. I do have a “Best of DFR” page but haven’t updated it, simply because I would spend way too much time each day switching all those posts around. There’s probably a plugin that would do that for me, but I am not php-savvy at all.
Thanks Ana! And be sure to look for the next interview next week!