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12/29/2014

Marathon not a Sprint

As a former track runner, I’ve viewed Project Money in ways that go beyond how much money is in my bank account and religiously monitoring my debt. It’s innate in me to want to go fast but I’ve learned that steadiness and consistency helps to maintain your pace. These past 7 months have challenged me as an individual and bettering my future self and life. I would be whole-heartedly lying if I said this was easy. It was probably one of the most challenging experiences I’ve been through but also one of the most rewarding.

For the last 2 weeks, I have been home in Virginia and South Carolina enjoying the company of some of the people that I love the most. It is so fitting that I am ending this Project Money Journey where it officially started for me back in June. As we conclude this challenge, I’d like to take the opportunity to thank those that provided me with support, words of encouragement, prayers, random meals, hugs and company. I can’t name them all—but they know exactly who they are.  

Looking back since June—a lot has transpired and there were so many invaluable lessons that I’ve learned. I admit that I am very hard on myself and I sometimes have to be reminded of my own accomplishments. Below is a letter I wrote to myself as a reminder that indeed, this journey is not over…

Dear Connie,

You started this journey and the 2014 year as a 27-year old with a little over $30K in debt and minimal in savings. You are rounding out this amazing journey as a 28 year old who has paid down over 12% of her debt and increased her savings to exceed the goal of having at least 3 months worth of income in emergency savings.

Just in case you forgot, here’s what you’ve accomplished this year:

  • You paid off BOTH credit cards, equating to around $3,500 in debt paid.
  • You sacrificed personal travel/trips knowing that the savings accumulated would help you be in a better financial standing in the long-run. Don’t worry there is a beach and cabana somewhere with your name written in the sand in 2015. J
  • You refinanced your car loan lowering your interest rate from 10.9% to 3.75%
  • You raised your credit score.
  • You cut down on eating out drastically.
  • You helped others as much as you could.
  • And most importantly, you shared your story.

I see a change in you. And it’s a good change. Your excitement when you score double coupon savings at Walgreens or the grocery store is amusing yet exciting because you see the value in consistent habits.

You’ve made friends along the way and offered up advice to those that were humbled enough to ask.

You faced you’re fear of “what will people think” in the attempt to conquer a feat that seemed far-fetch.

I want you to remember that in the journey of financial independence mistakes and lessons will be learned—but let’s cut down on those okay?

Practice, Patience, and Persistence. These 3 things are key. I am proud of you. And I am sure so many others are rooting for you as well. You’ve done well. Keep it up! So, this isn’t goodbye—this is “so long”. See you on the other (debt-free) side.

Hugs,
Connie

 

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Connie, we are taking your message that financial wellness is a marathon to heart. We hope the 3 P's will sustain us, as they have you, through this journey in 2015 and many years to come. Thank you for sharing your amazing journey. We wish you all the best and look forward to hearing more about your journey post PM. Louise and Dave

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