Sense & Centsibility Blog

What's Preventing You from Achieving Your Goals?

What's stopping you?Do you want to retire at a certain age or take a trip to Australia or stay home with the kids? Most people have some type of goal in mind for the future. It can be difficult to achieve any type of goal without a plan and when there is something in the way. Often that obstacle to achieving your goals is financial related.

Is it debt?

Are you able to make ends meet but continue making payments toward credit card debt with little progress? You're not alone. People don't like to talk about debt and at the same time there's no shame in it. Life happens and ultimately it's what you choose to do about that debt that matters in the end. A faster way to pay it off is through a Debt Management Plan with LSS. If you want to find out if a DMP is right for you, call us at 888.577.2227 or get started online with a free financial counseling session from a trusted nonprofit. The Federal Reserve indicates that interest rates will be getting even higher, making it even more expensive to have debt. So take action now to pay off your debt sooner rather than later to save you money.

Student loan debt can be overwhelming, too. LSS can help you navigate your student loans, repayment, and other options including consolidation. Call us (888.577.2227) for your free student loan counseling session.

Are you under-earning?

This particular obstacle may be a little tougher to overcome, but it can be doable if you're proactive. It just depends on why you're under-earning. Do you only work part-time or not quite full-time? Try to find either a new full-time job or something to supplement your part-time job. Do you only work seasonally or does your income fluctuate sometimes? Either reduce your spending during the lower income times or find part-time/temporary work. For more tips, read How to thrive on fluctuating income and/or Ideas for Increasing Income.

Are you overspending?

Overspending is usually easy to diagnose, but can sometimes be tougher to change. However, with a little planning and making a conscious effort, it can be done. Start by creating a budget...determine how much money you have coming in versus how much is going out (and where your money is going). Make cuts where you find unnecessary or excessive spending. Even if you don't think something unnecessary, you can still find ways to reduce spending here and there. Check out How to make spending cuts to get out of debt and 5 money saving hacks you can start now for some suggestions.

Do you not have emergency savings (or enough of it)?

You're probably getting sick of hearing about emergency savings if you read a lot of our posts. But I can't reiterate its importance enough. If you're not saving for emergencies, this can hold you back from achieving your goals. Even worse - no savings can lead to debt...making it even tougher to be financially stable. So get started on savings asap.

Do you not have retirement savings (or enough of it)?

If your goal is to retire at a certain age - or ever - saving for retirement is a must. When it's available, take advantage of retirement savings options with your employer. And if they offer an employer match program, take full advantage of that, too. For more info, read Mary Ellen's post: 3 Ways to Save for Retirement.

Figure out what is preventing you from achieving your goals. Don't let finances get in your way.

Author Elaina Johannessen is a Program Director with LSS Financial Counseling. We equip and empower people to take charge of their finances, conquer their debt, and build savings.