Staying motivated to pay off debt can be really tough. There is so much social pressure to look a certain way, to have certain things and to do certain things. However, it is possible to stay motivated to pay off debt and achieve your financial goals. We have learned a few tricks along the way that I want to share with you on how to stay motivated to achieve your goals.
How to Stay Motivated to Pay Off Debt
First, we are not perfect and we have “fallen off the wagon” a time or two (or more) but there is one thing that always keeps us coming back when it comes to paying off debt. We have a vision for what we want our future to look like. We have this very real and attainable vision of what we want our future to look like and that is the biggest thing that keeps us coming back to debt payoff mode when we get off track. Having a vision that is bigger than us really motivates us to keep going.
Talk about your vision often
We literally would talk about our goals and our dreams every single day when we started paying off debt. We needed that constant reminder of what we were working towards. It is hard to not succumb to the social pressure sometimes, but when you start to talk about what your future will look like without debt, it becomes so much easier to remember why you are working so hard. It certainly helped us when we were trying to figure out how to stay motivated to pay off debt.
We have said no to social events, buying new things, updating our home and so much more because it just doesn’t fit into our finances. It has gotten significantly easier to say no because that vision of what I want for our future is so vivid, but to be honest it was really tough when at first.
I have to say that this was probably one of the things that helped me the most with not spending money. I needed almost constant nagging from my husband (good nagging of course) not to spend money so that we could live the vision for our future. I am the natural spender so this transition to not impulse buy was a big one for me. We talked about paying off our bills and we talked about our debt payoff schedule weekly. It helped so much to talk about our big goals and not worry about what everyone else was doing.
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I am a Christian and I would not be anywhere without my faith in God. The first thing we did when we started our journey was pray. We knew it was going to be very hard to start the process of debt payoff and we needed help. We needed help because we knew others would judge us. We needed help with how to stay motivated. We needed help to make the money come so we get start the ball rolling with getting our debt paid off. We prayed about it and we still do. I truly believe that God listens to each and every prayer. You may not get an immediate response, but don’t let that stop you from praying. He will answer your prayers.
We started praying that God would take a hold of our finances we were doing a pretty crumby job of managing them and we needed guidance on how to get to our goals. With patience and obedience, we saw steady debt pay off occur. We ended up paying off $78,000 worth of debt in 17 months. When we actually sat down to calculate the numbers, we were floored. Through constant prayer and continued intentional choices with our finances, our debt was going down!
Hang out with like minded people
In order for you go make big changes and stay super motivated, find a group of people doing what you need to do. If you find that group of people, cling onto them for dear life. Talk to them about the strategies they are using to pay off debt, cut their bills, avoid impulse buying. Having these close relationships will help you immensely because you are all trying to achieve the same goal. You can lean on them when times are hard and likewise, they can lean on you. You can share your struggles and your wins among people who understand. You can learn how to stay motivated from other people in conversation. Life wasn’t meant to do alone. You may just be the blessing that someone is looking for or you may find a blessing along the way.
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Don’t be afraid to be different
This was really hard for me. I tend to be a people pleaser and a peacekeeper. I want to conform to everything people need me to be and please everyone. When we started to pay off debt, I realized I couldn’t do this. The people around you will ask automatically think that you need money if you skip social events or you buy an older car when you could afford a newer car. Those people may be in your family or they may be very close friends. In any event, you have to be able to clearly define your goals and focus on those goals no matter what other people say. I have to admit, it was a little freeing to just go for what we wanted and not worry about what others would think. My husband is really good at this. He doesn’t care at all about what others think of him and I do- to some extent. I have gotten over this a lot especially when it comes to my family’s goals and future.
Stand your ground
Don’t let anyone persuade you to do something. I say this because it has happened to me a time or two. Well, actually a lot. I would let others tell me which direction to go and I would follow like a lost puppy. Once you decide to pay off debt or get healthy or really go after your dreams, stand your ground. Give it all you have and don’t look back. Don’t let the surrounding negativity get to you. You can have what you want if you are willing to work at it.
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The Number One Thing That Helps Me Stay Motivated to Pay Off Debt…
Out of all the tips I just went over, the number one thing that helps me stay motivated to pay off debt is having a bigger goal. I cling to that goal with everything I have. My husband and I plan to be debt free by the time my husband is 40 years old and have enough passive income to be financially free. We can then choose how much or little we want to work and be more available to our family. We will be able to go to our kids’ sporting events, choir concerts or whatever they decide to be a part of. Bottom line, we have full say in what we will be doing. That is the goal I cling to when I think about spending money. This is a bigger goal that I cannot achieve unless I am making some sacrifices now and strategically paying off our debt.
What keeps you motivated to pay off debt or achieve your goals?
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