Do not focus on the wall

Recently, I attended a women’s empowerment conference and one of the speakers used a profound analogy I found useful in many areas of life. She said one of the things race car drivers worry about most is going off course and hitting the wall. Race car trainers often tell drivers to focus on going straight, maintain speed and avoiding the wall is inevitable. The speaker said people who focus too much attention on “hitting the wall” often find themselves in the position they feared most. They spend too much time on the obstacle and forget to focus on the goal.

This is also true for people who are in debt. They keep telling themselves, “I don’t want to be poor; I don’t want to be poor.” And, unfortunately still end up with little or no money. Too much time is focused on the debt and not enough time spent on achieving wealth. Below are a few tips on how to create wealth.

Invest wisely. Many people find themselves in difficult financial distress because they have not properly prepared for emergencies or the future. If you don’t want to end up “broke” start putting things in place now to help you reach your financial goal/s.

  • Start contributing to a 401(k) account or some other retirement investment. A little put away now will bring huge results later.
  • Build an emergency savings fund. Prepare for the unexpected such as a job loss, home or car repairs, and even periodic expenses. This way you won’t have to rely on credit when these instances occur.

Hone your passion. Invest in a career that is rewarding and challenging. Don’t chase money. I firmly believe that if you work at something you’re truly interested in the financial award will follow. Many people are living their dreams and making money at the same time.

Protect assets. Insurance may seem like wasting money, but it will come in handy when it’s needed and will save you a boatload of bills. Make sure all your valuables are protected including yourself. Purchase the right coverage and amount to avoid an unnecessary financial strain.

Pay off credit card debt. Carrying a credit card balance each month is not helping you. The money going towards payments could be put to good use in another area. Be careful not to charge more than you can afford to pay off the following month. If you cannot pay the balance off in full commit to a 90-day payout plan. Also, don’t use more than 30 percent of your credit limit.

One of the best “how to get wealth” advice out there is so simple, but many fail to see it – live within your means. Spend less than you earn. Don’t buy a $60,000 car when you’re only earning $30,000. Develop some achievable financial goals and stay on course with those.

Renee McGruder is a former communications coordinator and grant writer at MMI.

  • The Consumer Federation of America (CFA) is an association of nonprofit consumer organizations that was established in 1968 to advance the consumer interest through research, advocacy, and education. Today, nearly 300 of these groups participate in the federation and govern it through their representatives on the organization's Board of Directors.
  • The National Council of Higher Education Resources (NCHER) is the nation’s oldest and largest higher education finance trade association. NCHER’s membership includes state, nonprofit, and for-profit higher education service organizations, including lenders, servicers, guaranty agencies, collection agencies, financial literacy providers, and schools, interested and involved in increasing college access and success. It assists its members in shaping policies governing federal and private student loan and state grant programs on behalf of students, parents, borrowers, and families.

  • Since 2007, the Homeownership Preservation Foundation (HPF) has served as a trusted, neutral source of information for more than eight million homeowners. They are partnered with, and endorsed by, numerous major government agencies, including the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Department of the Treasury.

  • The mission of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD works to strengthen the housing market in order to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes; utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; and build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination.

  • The Council on Accreditation (COA) is an international, independent, nonprofit, human service accrediting organization. Their mission is to partner with human service organizations worldwide to improve service delivery outcomes by developing, applying, and promoting accreditation standards.

  • The National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®), founded in 1951, is the nation’s largest and longest-serving nonprofit financial counseling organization. The NFCC’s mission is to promote the national agenda for financially responsible behavior, and build capacity for its members to deliver the highest-quality financial education and counseling services.