Making a decision (part of my “confusion” has to do with money)

Hi Brooke!

I wanted to ask you if you could help me make a decision.

For many many years now, I’ve wanted to fix my teeth. There is a lot of crowding on my bottom teeth and especially in pictures and when I’m laughing, it is very noticeable. People say that I have a beautiful smile and they don’t notice it, but it still bothers me.

Invisalign braces cost $5,000 and my insurance company will cover $2,000. I decided to begin the process to see if I was even eligible for the invisible braces (I told myself that if I wasn’t, I would not proceed and just be okay with my teeth as is because I do not want regular braces) and if I was eligible, I could make a decision at that point.

I have a lot of issues with money and a lot of debt as a result. I’ve definitely picked up the belief that I shouldn’t spend money on things just because I want them and what that has resulted in in my life is me railing against being told how to spend my money and overspending. Or not doing things I want because I feel like I shouldn’t. I love what you said on a recent podcast “Having money in your life solves a lot of problems that other things can’t solve. It’s interesting to think about how we live in a culture where money creates things and we have the ability to create money.” I want to be at a place in my life where every financial decision, big or small is not fraught with guilt or motivated by wanting to do what I want.

So my question currently is: I am getting a bonus in 2 weeks and part of me knows I SHOULD put the entire balance towards my debt, but there is part of me that would like to just put a portion of it towards the $3,000 braces. What steps do you suggest I take to make this decision (one that is not motivated by guilt or a childish “I want to do what I want and I want it now” belief)? Part of me thinks I need to just pick one and be okay with my choice, but I would love your guidance on HOW to break it down a bit more or if when it comes to money, if there is a different process you teach.