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The following is a guest post from Maisal at OnTheGoe.com on her tips for a healthy FIRE journey.
The road to financial independence can be long. Trust me. I am still working on paying back my student loans. There will be times when you will find yourself feeling like your goals are too big or completely out of reach. After all, making the decision to take control of your financial future is a huge first step. Rest assured though that it is a step in the right direction and certainly worth it in the long haul.
Whenever you find yourself feeling burned out from FIRE, take a deep breath and realize that you are not alone. Remembering these 3 key factors can help you keep your cool and get back on track in little to no time.
Recharging Is Important
Having too much stress in your life can lead to serious side effects such as a heart attack or a stroke, according to the American Institute of Stress. Do not let the fear of how long your FIRE journey may take you to gain complete control over your life. Instead, focus on ways to bring more calm into your life.
This could mean getting a journal to jot down your money worries and truly process through your feelings. It could simply mean downloading a free meditation app like Headspace or Aura.
Unplugging from life’s stressors is necessary for your mental health and overall well-being. When you recharge, you give yourself space to be able to more clearly map out a sound plan for your financial future.
Remember Why You Started
It is clear to see why this is often a piece of very popular advice in the motivational and mindset space: it works! The number one thing you can do when you find yourself starting to fall off track is to think back to the reason you started.
Honestly, go past the surface level crap and really ask yourself what your “why” is. We all have concrete and specific reasons as to why we want to achieve financial freedom.
Maybe you want to save up more money because you have the goal of buying your first rental property in cash. Or perhaps you are trying to become debt-free so that you can free up some capital to start your very own cupcake business.
Think about what you would do if money was no longer a big concern. What would be your wildest dream? When you can candidly answer this question, it usually means you have truly found your why.
Money Is A Tool, Treat It As Such
Money does not define you. Truly. Recessions happen. Layoffs happen. These are all factors that are completely out of our control.
Often times our society overvalues how much a person makes or how many assets they own. If you find that your perception of yourself fluctuates based on whatever amount is in your retirement account, you may have some mindset shifting to do. Instead of getting trapped on the hedonic treadmill and the constant pressure to have “more”, think of money as a tool. A very powerful tool, but a tool nonetheless.
Obviously, you can use money to invest in yourself and build more wealth. You can also use your extra cash as a means of traveling the world. What you want to avoid at all costs is using money as a measure of your self-worth.
Reaching financial success takes more than just dumb luck. You need to be deliberate and take thoughtful action towards your goals. However, we cannot be so focused on our future destination that we neglect to take care of ourselves now. If ever you find yourself freaking out about the future, take a moment to reflect on these 3 factors. Hopefully, it will allow you to gain some balance along the journey.