In 2015, financial blogger and author Lauren Bowling found herself deep in credit card debt for the second time.
She had already climbed out of $10,000 worth of debt that she racked up in college, which took her 14 months to pay off. This time, she owed $8,432 after a big home remodel.
At the time, "my blog was taking off and I wanted to work for myself," says Bowling, who was working as a content marketing strategist. "I realized I couldn't make that leap with all this debt, so I thought, 'How can I knock this out as fast as possible?'"