It was such a pleasure interviewing Melanie Lockert from Dear Debt. I’m an uber-nerd and couldn’t contain how much I love Portland (where she currently lives) as you may have gathered from me blurting it out at the beginning of this episode.
But in addition to secretly wishing I lived on the West Coast again, I’m also a huge fan of her blog and have been for many years, so it was a huge treat to be able to record this episode with the ultimate debt crusher.
Melanie’s story is one that I’m sure many of you can relate to. She took out a loan to do her bachelor’s degree, then got into her dream school NYU to do her master’s degree. That meant she had to take on even more student debt. The grand total tallied up to $81,000 in student loan debt. That’s basically a down payment on a house in Toronto or several very lavish tropical vacations.
Melanie ended up leaving New York after graduating to move to Portland to be with her partner. Although Portland is way more affordable to live in than New York, the economy isn’t great and she struggled to find work. But Melanie didn’t let that get her down.
She hustled and worked her butt off to find work and eventually turned her blog into a full-time job. And this year she even won a Plutus Award for Best Debt-Focused Personal Finance Blog and was nominated for Best Contributor/Freelancer for Personal Finance. You go, girl!
If you’re looking for a podcast episode to inspire you to break up with debt or just conquer something that seems completely impossible, you’ll definitely want to listen to this episode. And make sure to check out some of the links below that include a way to submit your Dear Debt Letter and some of Melanie’s most notable blog posts.
Submit Your Dear Debt Letter
- Melanie started this awesome program to help others break up with their debt and share their stories. If you have a debt story that you want to share and want to kick your debt to the curb, I highly recommend submitting your own Dear Debt Letter.
Notable Blog Posts by Melanie
- The Positive Power of Thinking
- One Year Later: My Journey as a Freelancer
- How I Spent Less Than $1,000 on a 2-Week Trip to Europe
- My Big Crazy, Audacious Goal
My Experiences with Debt & Unemployment
- How to Survive Unemployment After Graduation
- How to Keep Positive While Unemployed
- How I Paid Off My Student Loan in Less Than a Year
I’ve received some great feedback on my podcast on Twitter and through iTunes and Stitcher, but I’d still love to hear from you. Yes, YOU! If you want to share some of your thoughts or even want to suggest a guest or topic for an upcoming episode, please do! You can even just shoot me an email, because your feedback is always welcome.