We’re halfway through the year, and if you’re also in the middle of your debt-free journey, your motivation may be at an all-time low. The excitement of starting your debt-free journey may have worn off, and now you are in the daily grind of paying off those loans and making all the sacrifices you can.
I understand how difficult it can be to keep going when I feel like the finish line is still miles away. But this is the time when you have to dig your heels and say, “I’m here for the long haul!” Getting out of debt won’t be easy, so here are five tips to stay motivated while continuing to work towards your financial goals so you can end the year strong.
1. Remember your “why”
Everyone has a reason to get out of debt: People don’t make incredible sacrifices without being motivated by something powerful. What’s your “why”? Maybe it’s controlling your money so you can save for your children’s college, or maybe it’s being able to financially bless those who need help. Either way, take the time to think about it, talk about it, and dream about it again.
2. Break down your big goals
Getting out of debt is a huge goal. If you use the debt snowball method, which I recommend for ultimate motivation and speed, even just paying off your smallest debt can seem like a big deal. Break down your goals into smaller pieces that seem easier to eliminate. For example, you can set a goal for how much money you want to save by the end of the month or the end of the week. Then, once you’ve hit those little milestones, be sure to do something to celebrate it, whether it’s a family movie night or a budget date.
3. Create a visual to track your progress
You guys, it’s so important to have something that you can watch every day that reminds you of your goal. This could mean creating a vision board on Pinterest or keeping a goal tracking board on your fridge that you can update regularly. It’s so energizing to see yourself getting closer and closer to these goals.
4. Quit the comparisons!
Comparisons steal our joy, our paychecks and our sanity. And it’s far too easy to compare thanks to social media, but spoiler alert, social media doesn’t always reflect reality. Focus on your life and don’t worry about the tropical vacation or the new car your coworker’s friend’s cousin just posted on Instagram (you don’t know if they funded it, anyway. ). Focus on being happy with where you are at and look forward to whatever you can do and have once you are finally free from debt. For more tips on how to stop comparing yourself to others, check out this article.
5. Have a support network
Right now it’s important to have good talking people in your life. Surround yourself with people who will understand and support you on your journey and will not go to the trouble of choosing to say no to certain things. Community is the key. If you can, join an online support group or find someone else who is also trying to get out of debt.
I know it is not easy, but it is quite possible. Making sacrifices to get out of debt is totally weird, but you don’t want to be normal. Don’t give up now, you got it!
Rachel Cruze is a two-time national bestselling author, financial expert and host of the Rachel Cruze Show. She has appeared on Good Morning America, TODAY Show and Live! With Kelly & Ryan, among others. Since 2010, Rachel has worked at Ramsey Solutions, where she teaches people how to avoid debt, save money, budget and earn money at any stage of life. Follow Rachel on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube or online at rachelcruze.com.