Do you want to live life to the fullest? Have enough money to accomplish your biggest hopes, dream, and goals?
Great. So you’ve written a “money mission statement,” right?
Maybe not. Most people don’t have a money mission statement, either because they don’t know they need one or because the idea of making one sounds like as much fun as doing taxes. But a money mission statement is crucial to accomplishing all those exciting things you want in life.
And putting one together can actually be pretty inspiring in itself.
What Is a Money Mission Statement (and Why Do You Need One)?
Simply put, a money mission statement is the roadmap that brings your big life goals into alignment with your spending. Without a mission statement, you may think you’re doing fine financially (sticking to your budget, not getting into debt, etc.). But in reality, you’re also not getting any closer to achieving your major life goals, such as buying your dream home, launching a business, or backpacking across South America for six months.
Unless you’re heir to a vast financial empire, your money is limited. That means every dollar you spend on X (cable TV, drinks, interest payments) is a dollar that you can’t spend on Y.
You need to prioritize your spending in a way that moves you closer to your goals. A mission statement helps you define those goals and also helps you figure out a plan of action.
It’s hard to have control over your financial future when you don’t know where you want to go or how you’re going to get there. A money mission statement helps you create that roadmap. And, if you do it right, it also does something else — inspires you to make your dreams a reality.
How to Write a Mission Statement That Gets You Excited
Putting together a mission statement might sound tedious and dry: follow these steps, plug in these numbers, and toss in some jargon for good measure. But there’s no point in having a plan of action if it doesn’t inspire you.
For instance, here’s a bad money mission statement: “My goal is to reduce my debt while maintaining a strong quality of life.”
There are some great sentiments in that statement, but it doesn’t exactly inspire you to rally the troops, does it? It’s missing any elements of emotion or passion. And that’s a problem, because when you have to make tough financial choices, let’s be honest: you decide with your heart and your gut.
So let’s get your heart and gut involved in putting together your money mission statement. Ask yourself these questions:
1. What do I need in my life to be happy? For instance, you might want to maintain a “strong quality of life,” but what does that mean? What do you need to consider your life happy and complete?
Maybe you want to travel to Europe for at least two weeks every summer. Maybe you want to snowboard at least 20 days this winter. Or you might want to a job you’re passionate about or spend more time with your family. This is the emotional side of the equation — the “why” that keeps you going.
2. What are my short-term and long-term money goals? Maybe you want travel to be a big part of your life now, but you also want to build up more financial security for your future. Maybe you want to find a job you love but also save up enough money to buy your first house. A good mission statement helps you enjoy the present while also planning for the future.
3. What financial obstacles are currently standing in my way? You might wish you made more money, had fewer expenses, or had more savings for a rainy day. If there are any barriers blocking your money goals, your mission statement should include ways to overcome them.
4. What specific steps can I take to make all this happen? A strong mission statement provides you with specific action steps and deadlines to help make your goals possible. Instead of saying “I want to pay off debt,” for instance, you could say, “I will crush $8,500 in loan payments by the end of the year” or “I’ll put an extra $100 a month towards my student loans.” Make your action steps concrete and measurable.
Now, add it all together, put it in your own words, and you’ve got your motivational money mission statement! A revised version might be:
“Debt sucks and it’s keeping me from buying a home and working at a more fulfilling job. I’m going to eliminate my debt by making twice the minimum payments while cutting back on things I don’t care about that much, like dining out and paying for cable TV. This way I can still enjoy my favorite things: travel and time with my friends.”
And voila — now you have a money mission statement that gets you excited. Post this in a spot you’ll look at every day: your bathroom mirror, your computer, your refrigerator. And the next time you’re tempted to spend $40 on dinner instead of cooking, glance at your mission statement and remember the bigger picture.
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1 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen or possess a 10-year (non-conditional) Permanent Resident Card, reside in a state Earnest lends in, and satisfy our minimum eligibility criteria. You may find more information on loan eligibility here: https://www.earnest.com/eligibility. Not all applicants will be approved for a loan, and not all applicants will qualify for the lowest rate. Approval and interest rate depend on the review of a complete application.
Earnest fixed rate loan rates range from 3.89% APR (with Auto Pay) to 5.87% APR (with Auto Pay). Variable rate loan rates range from 2.47% APR (with Auto Pay) to 5.87% APR (with Auto Pay). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 8.95% for loan terms 10 years or less. For loan terms of 10 years to 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 9.95%. For loan terms over 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 11.95% (the maximum rates for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate loans are based on a publicly available index, the one month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Your rate will be calculated each month by adding a margin between 1.82% and 5.50% to the one month LIBOR. The rate will not increase more than once per month. Earnest rate ranges are current as of Month/Day/Year, and are subject to change based on market conditions and borrower eligibility.
Auto Pay discount: If you make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic, monthly deduction from a savings or checking account, your rate will be reduced by one quarter of one percent (0.25%) for so long as you continue to make automatic, electronic monthly payments. This benefit is suspended during periods of deferment and forbearance.
The information provided on this page is updated as of 08/21/18. Earnest reserves the right to change, pause, or terminate product offerings at any time without notice. Earnest loans are originated by Earnest Operations LLC. California Finance Lender License 6054788. NMLS # 1204917. Earnest Operations LLC is located at 302 2nd Street, Suite 401N, San Francisco, CA 94107. Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest.com/terms-of-service, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 888-601-2801 for more information on ourstudent loan refinance product.
© 2018 Earnest LLC. All rights reserved. Earnest LLC and its subsidiaries, including Earnest Operations LLC, are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.
2 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.
Laurel Road Disclosures
3 Important Disclosures for SoFi.
4 Important Disclosures for LendKey.
Refinancing via LendKey.com is only available for applicants with qualified private education loans from an eligible institution. Loans that were used for exam preparation classes, including, but not limited to, loans for LSAT, MCAT, GMAT, and GRE preparation, are not eligible for refinancing with a lender via LendKey.com. If you currently have any of these exam preparation loans, you should not include them in an application to refinance your student loans on this website. Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents in an eligible state to qualify for a loan. Certain membership requirements (including the opening of a share account and any applicable association fees in connection with membership) may apply in the event that an applicant wishes to accept a loan offer from a credit union lender. Lenders participating on LendKey.com reserve the right to modify or discontinue the products, terms, and benefits offered on this website at any time without notice. LendKey Technologies, Inc. is not affiliated with, nor does it endorse, any educational institution.
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Citizens Bank Disclosures
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