Iredell News

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OptiMed Physician at Iredell Shares Debt Struggle in New Book

Dr. Obioma Anukwuem is a respected hospitalist with OptiMed at Iredell Memorial Hospital with nearly 20 years’ experience. That's why his story of debt may come as a surprise to patients and colleagues who read his newly published book. At one point in his career he found himself nearly half a million dollars in the red. In his book titled Debt: Slavery in Disguise, Dr. Anukwuem shares how he got rid of the debt in a three and a half year period, and how others can achieve financial freedom as well.

"Debt enslaves us. It keeps us in bondage," Dr. Anukwuem said as he explained the book's title. "When we’re in debt we always think about it. It steals our peace of mind. If not tackled, it only gets worse."

Dr. Anukwuem said he made the same mistakes which cause money problems for many Americans. He thought he was buying into the American dream, purchasing a new home, leasing cars and charging purchases to credit cards. Before he knew it, his debt ballooned to nearly $500,000.

"People say - He’s rich because he drives a fancy car," Dr. Anukwuem said. "They don’t ask, how much does he owe? But you have to understand the concept of net worth. When we started this process, our net worth was negative."

To get out of debt and remain debt free, Dr. Anukwuem said he and his family had to change their mindset when it came to money matters. The lessons he learned compelled him to write his new book, which includes his plan for paying off debt and building net worth. He also drew on his experience as a physician in order to help people approach financial challenges.

"We set short term goals. We never wanted to look at the big picture," Dr. Anukwuem said.

"Like I tell my weight patients, don't look at the 40 or 50 pounds you want to lose, that will make you feel overwhelmed. If you set short term goals, before you know it, you see the results."

The community is invited to attend a book signing event on November 17 at Barnes and Noble bookstore at Birkdale Village in Huntersville at 7 p.m.

Debt: Slavery in Disguise is now available in paperback, hard cover and Kindle versions on, and

Categories: General News