Who doesn’t want to live a better life? But as the old saying goes, the devil is in the details and when it comes to having an improved or ramped up lifestyle, details are what matter most. How does a person achieve the general goal of having a better life? Here are five ways that have already worked for people who are willing to persevere, be patient, and make a few small sacrifices to move ahead in the game of life.
Get an Advanced Degree or Certificate
For millions of adults, getting a college or master’s degree is a lifelong dream. If you decide to follow this path after middle-age, or even as a career change tactic in your late 20’s or early 30’s, do some serious research to learn what the most marketable degrees are. Currently, a few of the hottest career fields include nursing, teaching, law, and just about anything tech related. Spend time finding out about job availability in whatever degree field you decide to pursue.
Refinance Your Student Loans
When you refinance your education debt, you instantly make several improvements in your financial life. For starters, you can usually get a more favorable interest rate because you have some work experience and a better credit rating on your side. You’ll also generally get more time to pay off the obligation and enjoy lower monthly payments on the loan. The beauty of this life tweak is that it takes minutes to take care of the details, and you can do it all over the phone or online.
Dozens of best-selling books tout the value of getting rid of all the junk in our lives. One reason such books sell so well is that the message resonates with people on a very deep level. There’s a social movement underway to minimize the number of physical things in our living space. If you feel this same urge, consider doing all the standard de-cluttering activities like minimizing your clothing collection, getting rid of all unnecessary items in your garage, attic and basement, selling or giving away most of your books, and clearing every room in your house of unneeded appliances, furniture, and wall hangings. Don’t go overboard if you decide to de-clutter. Start small and see how this new way of doing things makes you feel. For many, it brings a certain amount of emotional freedom.
Start Saving Money
Set up a savings account at your bank if you don’t have one already. Then, sign up for a payroll savings plan at work, or simply set a reminder on your phone or computer to deposit a fixed amount of money into the account every time you get paid. It’s much easier to save once you get in the routine, so begin now and see how quickly your funds add up.
Make a Realistic Budget
Speaking of money, take the time to sit down and hone in on your monthly budget. You should be doing this every six months anyways, but if you’ve neglected the chore, now is the time to begin anew. Look for places where you can save, rearrange monthly bills so their due dates coordinate with your paychecks, and remove any outdated items.