When I was reading Total Money Makeover, one thing that stood out to me was him saying that you need to have a "why" or some sort of motivation for getting out of debt. It could be to secure your retirement, to ensure your children have a better future, or just because debt is annoying.
I have a few things motivating me, one is that my parents, as much as I love them, were and still are not very good financial planners. They will both probably work until they die. That is not the life I want for Josh and I, so securing our retirement is definitely a motivation for me! Another is that debt is annoying. I get so annoyed every payday because 85% of our paycheck is gone by the next day. It's frustrating and annoying as hell. The idea of having another 10 years of this makes my hair grey. That is also one of Josh's main motivations. Not having money on payday is obnoxious. While those things are definitely huge motivators for me they're not the biggest motivator. My biggest motivator is ...
Josh and I had a date night this past Thursday because he got the official date that he is leaving and it really hit me that day. I was really down and wanted some intentional alone time with my husband. Once we got home and went to bed I was scrolling on Instagram and came across Cassie De Pecol's account. In case you don't know, she just completed an around the world trip in 18 months, visiting all 196 countries. She is the fastest female to do so. Anyway, I was scrolling through the photos and since Josh wasn't asleep yet I shared it with him.
We spent a good hour scrolling through the pictures and talking about some of the places such as Afghanistan and Syria and the other war torn places that she visited. Then we came across a photo of Mongolia. Mongolia has been at the top of my list for many years. I would love to experience life as a Nomadic person and cross the country on horseback. There is so much about Mongolia that intrigues me and its one of those countries that I will make a point to travel to sooner rather than later. I told Josh this and it really surprised him, and it got us talking about the places that are on the tops of our lists.
We realized that we really had a lot of places in common, and some of his top places are some of the places that I've been and loved such as Rome. The more we talked about it, the more we really wanted to travel. Since we're both not making much right now and travel is hard to arrange with the military since things can change at any time, we want to focus on getting out of debt so that when he gets out of the military we can travel. Also, if we happen to get Germany (I'd love you forever, Army) as a duty station, we want to have a lot of this debt taken care of so we can take advantage of the travel opportunities there. Even if we end up on the west coast, like Washington, we want to be able to travel out there since we'll most likely end up in the southeast after he leaves the Army.
Traveling more has always been something I want to do, and after our cruises, it is climbing on Josh's priority list, too. To motivate myself, I have saved some pictures of different places I want to travel to and will be placing them around the house (yes, I'm going to be that person), and in my wallet to remind myself to think before buying something. What's more important, this thing I'm going to buy or travel.
While there are obviously other things that will motivate me to get our debt paid off ASAP, I think travel will be my biggest motivation and the one thing that makes me push harder.
Are you working on paying off debt?? What is your biggest motivator??