It is important to know your “why” when you are paying down debt, because it will help you to stay motivated when times get hard. Digging your way out of this deep hole will not be simple, but when you have something motivating you, you will not give up so easily on your financial goals.
We really did not have much growing up. Money was the source of regular arguments between my parents (who ended up divorcing). As they age, they still don’t have retirement accounts or savings, meaning that it is highly likely that at some point caring for them becomes my and my sister’s responsibility. My goal in paying off my debt quickly and aggressively while young is to set myself up for a better financial future individually and the very plausible reality that I have to care for others besides my someday-future-family.
Finding Your Own Why
It is time for you to develop your own “why” to drive you. Here are three questions that you can ask yourself to determine what it is that is motivating you to succeed in paying off your debt.
What keeps you going when things are hard?
Everyone is driven by different things within their life. Is it your faith? Your loved ones? A particular belief or hobby that makes you who you are? Decide what keeps you going in the hard times, and consider that this drive could be your own “why” for ridding your life of debt.
Who are you doing this for?
Yourself? Your kids? Often times we are motivated the most by a desire to protect others and to better our own lives. Whoever this is for, imagine them in your mind. Work hard each day for that particular person. Remember that this is about more than being debt free; it is about creating the lifestyle that you want for yourself and for your loved ones.
What can your future look like if you don’t have debt?
What goals do you have that would be positively impacted by freeing the weight of debt in your life? Maybe it would allow you to finally buy a bigger home for your family, to be able to vacation once a year with your loved ones, or to not have to worry about paying the bills each month at last. You deserve that stress-free and happy lifestyle. Remind yourself each day that if you persevere to pay off your debt, you will be one step closer to having the lifestyle that you are aiming for.
Ponder these questions and contemplate what your “Why” could be for liberating your life from debt. Once you are aware of what it is, hang a reminder on your fridge of what is inspiring you to bring about change. Allow your “Why” to encourage you; use it each and every day to urge yourself to meet your financial goals.
Emilie is an Army Wife, Data Engineer, and CrossFitter with a love for working through her thoughts in this space on the internet. She lives with her husband Casey and their pup Bo in Savannah, GA.