Living under a heavy burden of debt is difficult. Many people feel stuck in their financial circumstances, and are unsure of how to dig themselves out of a dire situation. This sentiment is especially common around the holidays. For many in these straits, filing for bankruptcy and getting a "fresh start" may be the best possible course of action. Once the decision is made to seek bankruptcy protection, a huge sense of relief often follows. However, in order to insure your bankruptcy yields the desired results-the elimination of your debts--it is prudent to avoid certain actions before you file. The following tips are offered to assist individuals and families as they prepare to file for bankruptcy.