Deep Breaths. Center yourself. Bring up the statements and assess the situation. You will find it's never as bad as you think it is, once you breathe.

In this you will find the solutions you need. Let's start with the good news, which will hopefully make you feel better, at least statistically:

Most Americans have some sort of long-term debt, be it a house mortgage, car payments, or student loans. There may come times when all things in the budget aren't considered, and as a result, you're late on your loan payment. Here's what you should do in this case.

Don't panic.

This is the worst thing you can do. Take a deep breath, and bring up your bank statements, and get to the bottom of what went wrong, and where. Then devise a budget to make sure you get the minimum payment in to ensure you are in good standing with your lender. This will require cutting some corners and reprioritizing your spending. It's necessary, as this will protect your credit score, which is essential to keep as high as possible to make sure you get the lowest rates on the money you borrow. And from there, you start working on paying off your debts in chunks; as much as you can, to get your debts paid off so you can dedicate that money once used for debt payments toward other components that lead to your financial freedom, like real estate, stocks, bonds, and crypto.

Know that some debt is actually a good thing.

Most folks don't know that having some sort of debt in cycle with your budget is great for building up your credit score and keeping it as high as possible. The credit score companies like to reward those who are consistent with their payments and know how to manage a low balance of debt, and if they are going to come close to maxing out on a larger purchase, they pay most if not all of it off right away so that they don't get penalized by the lender.

Apply for a prepaid credit card.

A Pre-Paid Credit card is a low-risk option for building your credit, so you can get approved for larger credit amounts.

This is a way to build up your credit and get used to spending only that which is in your budget. So you don't end up in a hole when you decide to borrow higher amounts of money. You already have budgeting down and are responsible enough to make sure your payments are met.

Cut corners to free up funds.

Analyze how you are prioritizing your funds, and eliminate the fat.

The excuse that there isn't enough money to pay for the bills isn't actually accurate. It's better to say that the money you had you decided to prioritize on other things. And I know this sounds harsh---as some things we buy are for essentials. But sometimes we buy crap. That's part of life. And that's why the "Hot-Mess Fund" exists. But if there's no budget set for that, and money isn't being set aside for loan payments---that means some corners will need to be cut, and that means eliminating some of the fun purchases to make sure loan payments are made on time and set as a priority. Otherwise you can expect a hit on your credit score because you wanted that Starbucks coffee every morning for a month and it ended up consuming more than $300 from an already tight budget. Take account for all money coming in and out. This will keep you on track with your payments.

Bonus Tip: Pay with cash whenever possible.

Paying with cash is a tip the rich use to stay accountable for one's spending.

I know this sounds counter intuitive with the whole COVID thing, but it's important to feel what it's like to spend your cash. Feel it in your hand. An entire paycheck. Feel what it's like to hold a lump sum of money. And also feel what it's like to blow a large chunk of it all at once. Experience the emptiness. Because the digital world prevents this link from being established, and most folks have no concept of how much a large amount of money feels in hand. It will help you to decide whether you really want something or not. It makes every purchase a conscious one.