In the world of sports, or even cinema, people or teams often make a comeback. It’s a great story, when a team is down by many points, but then makes a dramatic comeback to win the game. In movies, this can take all kinds of forms, such as the bad guys looking like they’re going to take over the city until the good guys miraculously find a way to save the day.
The comeback is a big part of entertainment.
What about our money? I’d say the stakes are a lot higher than in sports or movies, though I suppose one could make the case that life is a game sometimes!
There are times when people get themselves into a financial bind, often through decisions of their own, but sometimes through circumstance and bad luck. It is what it is. But it’s possible to make a comeback, as we can observe by reading and hearing stories about people who have paid off significant debt or bounced back from career or business failures.
Along those lines, I thought I’d put together a short list of steps one can take to make money comeback. Here goes:
1) Be honest with yourself
Minimize excuses! Instead of automatically blaming external factors, look for any and all ways you contributed to the situation. Diagnose the situation, and figure out exactly what happened. It’s probably not overly complicated. It’s a big deal to actually learn from mistakes and apply the learnings, to make sure we don’t get into a situation like that again!
2) Set goals
Let’s say the problem is having massive student loan balances, or perhaps credit card debt. It might even be something different, such as not having enough savings later in life, or having a big setback financially due to a health issue. Regardless, once we have figured out the problem, we can determine we would ultimately like to be.
3) Have a comeback plan
Once we know what truly happened, and what are new goals are, it’s time to put together a plan. This plan should entail specific action steps on how to reach goals. Along the way, it also helps to have milestones to track progress.
4) Take personal accountability
Reaching success, and making a comeback, will require us to own up to our responsibilities. Hopefully, if one continues the spirit of being honest with ourselves as in step #1 above, this will carry over to the actual execution of the plan. We are responsible for our own success, not anyone else or in most cases not external factors as well.
5) Be persistent and tenacious
Along the way, there might be ups and downs. Just like when someone is trying to get in shape, but breaks down for a week and skips workouts and eats junk. Well, that might interrupt the progress that have made during the month prior, but it doesn’t have to cause the person to give up hope. Rather, it helps to just learn how to tough it out, deal with the setbacks, and continue on your path to success.
I think the same concept can apply to our finances. We have to make it habit to make the right choices, but also a habit to show the resolve to bounce back from a mistake or setback here and there. After all, if we are trying to make a comeback in the first place, we should be able to deal with smaller setbacks along the way!
Readers, have you (or anyone you know) ever had to make a financial comeback? Any thoughts on these steps above? Any others to add?