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Pot of Gold – Saving for Retirement is Daunting

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My money class met for the second time and it was daunting but good. Week 1, everyone was to do their no shame, no guilt budget based on what you spend today. And then we were to do our future budget, like where do we want to be.

For the second week, we talked about the “pot of gold” as they refer to the savings for retirement. Essentially, they provided another worksheet that walked you through creating a target number to save for retirement. It was a daunting number – in the millions for most people. And then they discussed what you need to do to reach that “pot of gold”.

It’s not luck of the Irish. It’s hard work, strategic thinking and smart savings and investing. I’m getting there!

It was a very grounded discussion (remember, this is targeting people like me who are entrepreneurs growing a business). The conversation was centered around what you need to live, what you need to set aside for taxes and what you need to contribute to your pot of gold to get there.

And for this class, they indicate that your pot of gold should be enough for you to pull down 3% for 30 years. I am not sure where they got those numbers but I’m guessing it’s based on lifespan after retirement?

Anyways, it made total sense to me and really met me in a headspace where I’m comfortable. I’ve always kind of lived by “how much do I need to make?” Ok, let’s hustle and build to get there. I just settled for too little, was too comfortable with debt and frankly needed this training a LONG time ago.

It was great.

I didn’t get to attend the 3rd session at the end of last week (work got in the way) but plan on watching the replay soon. I’ve got a lot of work to do to build my “pot of gold”. This class is amazing though. Real numbers, strategy that works with the way I think. I’m so glad I’m doing this.

Debt Snowball Method – A Free Tool

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They say hindsight is 20/20 and I would definitely agree with that. I think we can all agree that I could have been out of debt far earlier if I would have just chosen a plan and stuck to it. While our life has really been what I consider a grand adventure and roller coaster ride, I wish I knew then what I know now.

I thought I would share a resource that I actually found way back then, but never fully utilized or stuck to. The debt snowball Excel template. I’m not sure what motivated me to go looking for this all those years ago. But I’ve used this same one every time I’ve become reinvigorated to get out of debt.

Debt Reduction Calculator: Excel Template from https://www.vertex42.com/Calculators/debt-reduction-calculator.html

Debt Reduction Calculator: Excel Template

If you scroll about half way down the page, you will be able to download for free the Excel template. They have paid versions further down, but I don’t know what they include. I’ve only ever used this free version. (There are no affiliate links here, no tracking, just a link to a spreadsheet I use to this day.)

The screenshot above shows where you enter your data and then on another tab it shows you exactly how much to send to each debt every month. And gives you a slot to enter any extra payments (that are always to go to your primary debt goal that month.) It’s a really great tool. And every time I “restart” my payoff journey I updated on my numbers and the date.

Do it now, sacrifice now

I wish I had stuck to this plan all those years ago. I wish I knew how good getting out of debt would feel. It would have been life changing in so many ways.

While I feel like I’m finally making good strides I want to encourage anyone else who is just starting this journey or starting it again as I have many times…stick to it. Do it now. Sacrifice now. Wait on those purchases. Wait on those trips. Your kids don’t need everything and to do everything.

Here I am with my kids almost gone, having struggled ALL THEIR LIVES and I’m just now getting to a place where I wanted to be when they were young. Make the hard choices now. You will thank yourself, I promise. And use this great tool as a guide.

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