Accumulating too much debt weighs you down financially and limits your ability to achieve your goals. Not to mention the significant impact carrying debt can have on your quality of life and happiness. If you feel overwhelmed by the state of your finances, our Better Your Finances in 7 Days Challenge may be the jumpstart that you need.
It’s simple. With the Better Your Finances in 7 Days Challenge, you’ll complete one simple and effective exercise each day that will help you take control of your finances and better manage debt.
Ready to feel financially confident? Let the Challenge begin!
Day 1: Set a Positive Mindset
Deciding to participate in a challenge means you’ve already got the intention to improve yourself and see what you are capable of achieving. As you begin your financial challenge this week, it’s critical to maintain that feeling of intent in the back of your mind.
Think of all the reasons you want to obtain financial freedom and the long-term goals you hope to achieve. Write them down on a sheet of paper and post them in a location that you will be sure to see every morning. As you start the day, this will help to keep you focused and motivated throughout the Challenge and beyond.
Day 2: Solidify Your Budget
We’ve all heard some variation of this advice before: “to have a successful future, you have to start planning today.” And while it may seem cliché, there is truth to this advice—the steps you take today do have a significant impact on your future.
One of the biggest downfalls most people face when struggling with finances is not establishing a budget. Budgeting allows you to visualize your cash flow and set a plan for how you spend your money. While completing this exercise, you’ll start to rethink your spending habits and focus on your financial goals.
There are plenty of budget methods you can put into action, such as the 50/30/20 budget, the envelope system, the zero-based budget, and the pay-yourself-first method. You just need to find the one that works best for you and your financial situation.
Day 3: Start an Emergency Fund
When you’re drowning in debt and struggling to pay your bills every month, just the very thought of saving money can seem like an impossible task.
While it may feel daunting, you should prioritize establishing an emergency fund among your financial goals. Having an emergency fund in place helps provide you with a financial buffer so that you have immediate access to resources you can rely on in a time of need.
The key to not feeling overwhelmed and staying motivated is to set smaller, short-term saving goals instead of lofty ones, such as saving $500 as opposed to $5,000. Start with a designated amount you can realistically save every month, even if that amount seems low. Once you’ve reached your first savings milestone, set your next one. And so forth. Before long, you’ll have a comfortable emergency fund in place and will feel prepared in case the unexpected happens.
Day 4: Reduce Your Monthly Expenses
One way to help improve your financial situation is to find ways to reduce your monthly expenses. While you may not be able to reduce fixed costs, such as your housing or car payment, look for other areas that you have more control over. For example, canceling extra streaming or subscription services can instantly eliminate a recurring bill from your monthly expenses and free up additional funds. If you’re someone who frequently orders take out, try making more of your meals at home instead. Look for alternate no-cost ways to spend your free time if shopping is your go-to weekend activity.
Remember, making just one small change in your monthly expenses can have a significant impact when it comes to reaching your financial goals.
Day 5: Understand Your Credit Score
If you’re looking to make significant strides in your financial goals, it’s essential to know where you currently stand. Did you know that the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) allows consumers to receive a FREE copy of their credit report once a year? You can request a copy of yours today and receive a report from each of the nationwide credit reporting companies, including Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.
Knowing your credit score and the details surrounding your credit report will provide a baseline for determining what goals you want to set and where you should focus your efforts. Also, be sure to note any mistakes and request to have them removed as they could be negatively affecting your credit rating.
Day 6: Explore Your Options
When it comes to your options for managing debt relief, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. Now that you have developed a good understanding of your financial situation, it’s time to take the time to explore all of the solutions available for managing debt. From DIY debt payoff methods to debt relief programs with professional guidance, each strategy has its advantages and disadvantages.
At ACCS, we offer a Custom Debt Relief Plan to help guide you to the right debt solution for your unique financial situation. Our debt specialists will work with you to find the right relief plan at no cost or obligation.
Day 7: Focus on the Future
Congratulations! You’ve reached the 7th and final day in your financial Challenge! You should be proud because you’ve accomplished a lot this week. Not only did you dive into your financial situation and face your challenges head on, but you made a proactive game plan for tackling them.
Now is the time to forgive yourself and move on from your past financial mistakes. Reflect on what you have learned over the past week and how you can continue to practice positive financial behaviors. Keep referring to the list of goals you created on Day 1 and start to plan for how you can achieve them now that you have debt under control.
Interested in taking the Better Your Finances Challenge but feel that debt is in the way of you getting started? Contact us at ACCS for a Custom Debt Relief Plan first. Our experienced debt specialists have helped thousands pay off debt faster and for less than owed. Get the relief you need now so you can take on the Challenge with confidence.