It’s not always pleasant facing up to your debt. But ignoring it isn’t going to make it go away. You’ll only overcome your debt by taking proactive steps to eliminate it. And always remember, you have options. For example, here are some of the best ways to get out of debt.

Adopt a Debt Repayment Strategy

A lot of people make the mistake of thinking they’ll get out of debt by simply throwing money at what they owe until it’s all gone. While this is a nice thought, it’s rarely how things really work when it comes to paying down debt.

In order to more effectively beat your debt, you need to approach it with a plan. The results show that the snowball method overall has the best results. With the snowball method, you pay off your debts in order of balance amount—starting with the lowest. Doing this helps you build momentum, which will hopefully carry over to you paying off the rest of your loans one by one.

Do a More Thorough Job of Budgeting

Budgeting is something that you’re always hearing about as one of the best ways to beat debt. Digging into your finances will help you free up additional funds to throw at your debts.

In order to build a working budget, you need to total up all your income and expenses — both fixed monthly expenses (like rent or mortgage) and variable costs (like car maintenance and utilities). You’ll break expenses down by category, which will help you better see how much you’re spending on necessities versus wants.

Once you create a budget, you can find ways to free up more money, which can then be used to pay down your debt faster. It’s also a good idea to use your budget to help build emergency savings. Having some money set aside for unexpected incidents will allow you to avoid taking on new debt.

Seek Outside Assistance

Sometimes, getting out of debt requires more than you can do on your own. When you’re feeling completely overwhelmed by your debt, it’s wise to look for some outside assistance.

Credit counseling is one of the first places to look for help with your debt. This service will offer some helpful resources that will put you on the right track. Only work with legitimate credit counseling agencies that don’t ask for a fee up front, though.

Debt consolidation is another strategy to explore. This is where you take out a loan, use it to pay off your multiple outstanding balances, then focus on repaying this single loan over time — usually at a lower interest rate.

There’s also settlement to think about. Enrollees in a settlement program will deposit a certain amount of money into a special account each month until they have enough. Then the professional negotiation team will reach out to creditors on their behalf. The goal? To negotiate down balances, getting creditors to accept a lesser sum in exchange for timely payment.

Programs like Freedom Debt Relief’s Consolidation Plus even combine the power of consolidation and settlement for qualified enrollees, allowing them to use a consolidation loan to pay off settlements quicker.

Generate More Income

Making more money is a tried-and-true method for getting out of debt. There are several ways you can go about boosting your income. Some people might be able to negotiate a raise at their current job, take on more hours, or find a new position that pays a higher salary. Dedicating that extra money to paying down your debt can greatly accelerate your path to financial freedom.

It’s also worth considering the merits of getting a side job to generate some extra income. Doing this can vastly improve your situation with debt. If you have a lot of possessions, you might also be able to sell some in order to get some instant cash.

Change Your Lifestyle

Altering the way you live is ultimately one of the best ways to beat your debt. Try to find pleasure in things that don’t cost as much. Typically, these things will end up bringing you more prolonged happiness anyway. Get into the habit of making meals at home instead of dining out. Find free things to do in your city rather than shelling out to go to the movies beyond an occasional treat. The options are endless.

Getting out of debt can feel like an impossible task. But there are things you can do to help you beat your debt.