What comes to mind when you hear the phrase, "gazelle intense?" Beans and rice plus rice and beans? A beat-up car with the side mirror duct-taped and hanging on for dear life? Getting so angry at debt you sell every spare thing you can find on eBay and at garage sales?
Well, you’d be right. Gazelle intensity means you are nose to the grindstone, kicking it full speed ahead, and making sacrifices until debt is in your rearview mirror and your emergency fund is fully stacked.
“Baby Steps 1, 2 and 3 are done with great focused intensity and extreme levels of sacrifice,” Dave says.
But remember, that kind of intensity is reserved for Baby Steps 1–3. Once you get to Baby Step 4, you can ease up a little.
"When you break through Baby Step 3, that puts you in a place to save and invest, and be able to do some lifestyle things," Dave says. "Get yourself in a rhythm that is much more reasonable long-term and still be able to hit your goals."
In other words: Relax!
Dave shares a story of a woman who claimed to be on Baby Step 6 of the "Dave Ramsey Plan," but her family was still living on beans and rice! Literally! That’s a long time to pinch pennies. Don’t go into extreme mode for a decade and think you’re doing Dave’s plan the right way. Baby Steps 4–6 are when you enjoy all the hard work you’ve put in. There’s no need to keep living like you’re on Baby Step 1 when you’re on Baby Step 6.
And don’t feel like you have to blaze through the final Baby Steps as quickly as you knocked out the first three. "Baby Steps 4, 5 and 6—those are done over the period of years," Dave says.
Watch the video below for more on Dave’s take on being gazelle intense after Baby Step 3.