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The dust is settling on the debt negotiations, but many are still feeling weary about spending cuts and their personal debts. So, in the spirit of self-empowerment we included stories with advice, tips and motivation to get out of debt and stay that way.  Stand up, be decisive and move forward and show the government how it’s done! As always, if you enjoy any of our favorite bloggers, we encourage you to follow them on Twitter for regular updates. And don’t forget to follow Credit.com at @CreditExperts

8 Creative Ways to Stay Debt Free
Congratulations on paying down your debt! Achieving your goals is something to celebrate, but it can also lead to temptation. Now that you’re in a good place, it’s very important to maintain your status. We have some great tips that will keep you motivated, focused and maybe a little frightened.  @MSN_Money

Personal Finance: What You Should Know About Debt Collectors
The dread of getting a call from a debt collector can range from mild to severe. We have someone from the other side of the line that can give you perspective on the best way to handle collectors. This may be surprising to some, but like most things in life it pays to do your homework and be kind. @SacBee_News

6 Ways the Debt Deal Could Hurt College Students
If you listened to the coverage of the debt reduction debate you heard words like “painful” and “unpopular” and now we see exactly why. The nations cuts could have a direct pinch on your education financing options. If the national credit rating gets down graded students will likely feel the pain of this unpopular measure. @cbsmoneywatch

Should You Use Retirement Funds to Pay Off Credit Card Debt?
Like most financial strategies, using retirement funds to pay of debt can be a good option –or could lead to even more financial struggles. First, you have to work the numbers and take in to account the amount of your debt, it’s interest rate, and how long it will take to pay it off. Then compare that to the amount of your savings, the penalty rate of withdrawing it, and what it would be worth if it stayed where it is. If all of these things point to using the savings to pay off debt then go for it. But please be sure to show restraint and let that financial victory move you forward, not back.  @Forbes @Liz_GetFF

Hitting Your Personal Debt Ceiling
It’s easy to cast blame and much is cast on the government for overspending, but consumers are guilty, too. As the government put the country in trillions of debt, consumers collectively buried themselves in trillions of debt right along with them. The U.S. has become a nation of borrowers. Could some of the anger towards the government be exacerbated by the frustration people have about their own spending behaviors? @TheStreet_News

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