With all my debt, I’ve found that the number one way I stay motivated is to feel like I’m constantly making progress. So I had to figure out how much I needed to put towards my debt to feel like I’m making progress. I call that number, your magic number.
How a Magic Number Works
$200 is my magic number. It doesn’t have to be $200 all at once, but a total of $200 over the course of the month, any less and I feel like I’m not getting anywhere.
The closer I get to $200 the more motivated I am. If I can get over $200, I’m even more excited. The more excited I am about a goal, the more motivated I am to get to the finish line, the less impact debt fatigue has on me.
Figuring Out Your Magic Number
Now, I didn’t start paying down my debt and automatically know that $200 was what was going to make the biggest difference for me. It took time, it took getting frustrated, and it took being stuck in more than one rut. Just like me getting to debt free is going to take a lot more $200 minimum months.
To figure out your magic number, try to remember what months you felt like you were actually making some progress. Look back at all your debt payments for those months and see how much you put towards your debt. Average out the amount and try it out as a magic number. If after that first month, you don’t get that feeling of making progress, then up the number until you find one that gives you the right push.
Don’t Go Too High – Set Yourself Up for Success
Sure, I wish I was able to put $1000 each month to my current financial goal. However, $1000 is not currently feasible for me to do on a consistent basis. A $200 minimum can be done consistently without me stressing out a ton. It is also enough to feel like I’m making progress.
Most months I do a lot more that $200, but this is why your magic number is the MINIMUM needed to feel like progress is being made. If you are stressed trying to reach an unlikely minimum month after month your going to lose momentum, and probably a lot of hair. As anyone that has or is paying off debt knows, if you don’t feel like you are making some progress, it is hard to keep going. Even more important is that progress is a relative term, and it is for you to decide what feels like progress.
Maybe my $200 doesn’t seem like much to you; maybe $200 wouldn’t feel like progress to you. That’s OK. It doesn’t have to feel like progress to you; you can figure out your own magic number.
Your Magic Number Will Likely Be Different From Mine
We already went over how to figure out your magic number, now make sure you aren’t comparing your magic number to other’s magic numbers.
It has been said before and as cliche, as it is, it is true- personal finance is personal. So I would urge you to figure out your magic number and not worry about how it compares to others. What amount do you need to feel like you are continually making progress?
The more you feel like you are making progress, the more progress you will make (I think that makes sense?). So rock your magic number to debt freedom, I certainly plan to.
A Tool that Can Help You Reach Your Magic Number
Your magic number should be one that sets you up for success. However, if you want to take it a step further, Qoins is an app that will automatically put money aside from your account and apply it towards your debt.
You have the choice to have it take the change after rounding up your purchases. Or you can set an average amount per week you want it to pull out and put towards your debt. Use Code: ELIZ0900 when you sign up for Qoins to get $3.00 towards your debt using the app.
Wrapping it Up with a Bow on Top
Your magic number is the amount that you need to put towards your debt to feel like you are making progress. It should be something that can be attained every month.
It is the minimum amount you need to put towards your debt to feel like you are making progress. But you can of course, always put more towards your debt. If you need any help making sure you hit that magic number every month, you can always use a tool like Qoins. Use code ELIZ0900 to get an extra $3.00 to put towards your debt.
Once you figure out your magic number, you’ll be on your way to debt freedom.
Good luck! Let me know your magic number in the comments!