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What Would Change Your Life? Seriously, Tell Me

change your lifeThis post is going to be more about my response to your comments than it is about the words in this text box. What I want to know is…

What Would Change Your Life?

What is it that you’ve been longing for, striving for, yearning for…but just can’t seem to achieve? Do you continually set a goal, get started down the path, but then seem to fail miserably each time? I want to help.

I’ve been on your side of the wall. I’ve struggled with many of the same things you’re struggling with. Some of them I still struggle with, but I have been able to overcome many of the challenges that I’ve faced. And for those monsters that I’ve been able to slay, I want to help you overcome them too. I’ve been through the mine field. I know where the dangers are. And I would love to see you cross it safely as well.

No more failed goals. No more tears of frustration. If you really want to accomplish a specific financial obstacle, I want to know about it, and I’m committed to give my take on what I would do if I was in your situation.

So what is it? What would change your life dramatically? Here’s some common challenges to get the ball rolling.

“$1,000 in the bank”

– “If only I could save up $1,000 and put that in the bank, my stress level would be so much lower, and life would be so much more enjoyable.”

I totally agree.

At one point in my life, my bank account had $600 in it and my car needed new tires, brakes, and rotors…. The cost was well over $600. I had to put the full amount on my credit card with the hopes of paying it down over time. It sucked. I hated doing it. But, you know what? It happens. Since then, I’ve learned to save up the money and keep it in the bank.

If this would change your life, tell me your situation in the comments below!

change your life“A better paying job”

– “If my life is going to get better, it has to start with me getting a better paying job. What would change my life? A decent job!”

Some people earn $60,000 a year in their first job after college. Not me. First of all, it took me three months to even land my first big-boy job. Then, with a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance from a no-name college (bad choice on my part), the best job I could find only paid $33,000 a year. It wasn’t awful, but I certainly wasn’t eating lobster for dinner!

Do you need a better paying job? What is it that you do now? What would you like to do? What do you think it would take to get there?

Ask me my thoughts in the comment section below!

“No student loans”


If I asked 100 new grads, “What would change your life?” over half would would scream, “Derek, get me out of my student loan debt!! I might be 40 by the time I pay it all off!!”

It’s definitely scary, but it’s possible. When I graduated, I had only $12,000 in student loan debt. It wasn’t easy, but I paid it all off in 14 months.

If you have $40,000 in student loans, it might take you a couple of years. But, two years is a heck of a lot better than 10 or more.

Are you drowning in student loan debt? Talk to me about it below (if you haven’t caught it by now, I want to hear from every single one of you!!!).

change your life“To get out of apartment living”

Apartment living is simply no fun. You have people banging on the walls, stomping through your ceiling, and sometimes stinking up your place with whatever it is that they’re cooking! Almost everyone in this world would love to have a place that they can settle into and call their own.

What would change your life for the better? Would just be a dream come true to get out of your crummy apartment? Let me know what put you there, and what’s keeping you there!

“A college degree”

A high school degree doesn’t get you too much these days. Pretty much it’s useful for getting into college…and that’s about it.

What would change your life? If it’s a college degree, what’s holding you back? Are the costs just too daunting? Do you think you’re too old for it to make a difference?

“No credit card debt”

What would change your life? – “A zero balance on all my credit cards.”

Credit cards a sneaky little buggers. You put a few hundred bucks on one, tell yourself that you’ll pay it off at the end of the month, and then an emergency happens that loads another $800 onto it. Crap! Well, you figure you’ll pay it off next month, but then something else happens, and then some other setback, and then another. Eventually, your credit card builds to a point where there’s no way you’ll repay it in a month. Heck, you might not even be able to pay it off in a year even if everything goes right!

I know it might feel like you’ll never get rid of your credit card debt, but I absolutely believe that you can! Let me help you!

“A retirement account”

What would change your life? – “A retirement account that actually has money in it.”

Retirement accounts are always put on the list for ‘next year’, and then next year becomes the year after that…. Pretty soon, you’re 45 years old and still have absolutely nothing saved up for retirement. That’s pretty fricken scary.

If this is you, we need to get started on that retirement account pronto. You might think that you don’t have the money to start it, but I bet we can find some! Ask me your questions in the comment section below!

change your life“A dependable car”

Your car is a rust-bucket and it seems like it breaks down every day. What would change your life? – “A car that actually starts every time and stays running when it’s on the road.”

Yeah, that would be important.

If you don’t have a dependable car, it could really start a torrential domino effect.

  • your car breaks down and you’re late for work…again
  • your boss fires you because he’s sick of you being late all the time
  • you can’t pay the bills because your income was halted
  • you get evicted because you can’t pay the rent….

You get the picture. Having a decent car is pretty important in life.

You might think that you need a lot of money to get a dependable car, or that you need to take out a loan to get one, but neither is true. I have driven quality cars all my life, but hardly ever paid more than $3,000 for them.

Is this your issue? Would a better car change your life?

What would change your life? Is it an issue that’s mentioned above, or something totally different?

Battle of the Mind Money


My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.


  1. Interesting points, I was laughing while I was reading this post. Maybe because I find my self in all this categories:)
    From all those points one is essential “A better paying job” and with that one, you can manage all others. Nice post, thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks for the comment, Tod. So what are you currently doing to pursue a better paying job? Are you educating yourself? Getting mentored? Looking for higher level jobs outside the company? Too many people wish for more income, but do very little about it.

  2. What I see the majority of my coaching clients need the most is something so simple and it’s free: a plan. With that they can change every area of their life, including finances! So many of us (myself, too, in younger years) stumble from one (often bad) financial decision to the next and then wonder why we’re not getting traction.

    A well defined plan puts a purpose behind every dollar! And that would change anyone’s life!


    • Definitely. Many people have no plan and then wonder why they can’t get ahead. Thanks for your thoughts John!

  3. A decent, full-time job. I am going to be 60 next month. I have succeeded many times over finding great part-time jobs, but this continues to elude me. I am currently working a good part-time job (interesting work, nice people, relatively easy commute) but doubt it will become full-time. The previous job I had was full-time but a nightmare (owner was openly racist, people rude, work boring, among many other things; very high turn-over so not just me). Before that I had a great part-time job for seven years. I went back to school a couple of years ago to change careers but have struggled to make a go at it. I agree with John. Sometimes we just need a good plan and/or guidance. My hubby works and I have received several windfalls so things are okay for now but the money will probably run out by the end of the year if things don’t change.

    • Hi Suzie – I hate to say it, but I bet it’s going to be tough since you’re approaching the 60 year old mark. No one is supposed to discriminate because of age, but it is all too real and is certainly an obstacle to overcome.

      You mentioned that the money will likely run out by the end of this year. How can this be if your husband works full time and you work part time? There should be plenty of money to go around! Check these three things in your life: your house, your cars, and your food.

      Is the house too big? In too nice of an area for your income?

      Are your cars too new? Forcing you to make payments on them?

      Do you eat out too often? Bringing your food bill to over $400 a month?

      Something doesn’t add up here, and I don’t think it’s all about that elusive full time job. Am I wrong?

  4. Good post and so many issues that are damaging peoples finances. It takes dedication, effort, and perseverance to live life the right way. All cash and no debt life.

    • “The more often I take the hard road, the easier life seems to get.” — one of my favorite quotes. By sacrificing a bit in my late 20’s, I now have no debt, and two paid-for houses. Life sucked a little for about a year or two there, but now I have 40+ years of easy, stress-free living!

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