Money Talks, So Should You

Suitcase Finance: Setting financial goals when times are good

Sarah K.
by Sarah K., Dimespring 30

Although I’ll want to knock on wood as soon as I type this, I've found myself in a fortunate position for a 20-something.

My student loans are about to be paid off, I have more than six-months of living expenses sitting in a high-interest savings account, I’m able to max out my Roth IRA and contribute over and above what my employer matches to my 401(k), and I don’t have any debt beyond my tiny remaining student loan balance.

READ: From spender to saver in 3 simple steps

I’m lucky to have a good job that has allowed me to get here, but achieving these milestones also required plenty of sacrifice. Now, I find myself in a predicament of a different sort – I have no idea where to go next with my finances.

The Big Bad Student Loan and Big Bad Credit Card Debt from college is cleared up, but it’s almost equally scary to have the freedom to choose where to reallocate those funds. Do I save up for a more fuel-efficient car? Look into different investment vehicles? Boost my emergency fund to a year’s worth of expenses? And since my boyfriend and I are both in industries that, at this stage, require the ability to travel and relocate frequently, saving for property doesn’t seem like a priority either.

Others have suggested I take a different route, and loosen up my budget to allow for treating myself more and inconveniencing myself less.

READ: 3 ways to kick the shopping habit

As someone who considers myself relatively in control of my finances, this struggle to redefine my goals has been disconcerting.

Readers, how do you set and prioritize your financial goals when nothing seems “urgent?”


Sarah is a 20-something consultant, living wherever the job takes her. Originally from Wisconsin, Sarah is always on the hunt for a good craft beer and restaurants that serve fried cheese curds. Sarah is a member of the Dimespring 30, a group of bloggers sharing their thoughts, experiences and perspectives on personal finance.