How to Conquer Financial Obstacles and Anything Else Life Throws at You

Life is full of obstacles, whether they’re financial, mental, physical or spiritual. And to be successful in life and money, you’ve got to learn how to overcome them.

In my life, I’ve encountered quite a few obstacles; from getting divorced to paying off $14,000 of debt to starting my own freelance business.

But instead of dwelling on my problems, I began asking myself what needed to be done to fix each one and how I could make them work towards my advantage. That’s the best way to overcome anything life throws at you.

Don’t put all your time and energy into focusing on the issue; look for ways to make it work for you instead of against you. Analyze the situation and look for ways to solve the problem! This applies to everything in life, but especially to financial (or business) related problems.

Learn to Be a Problem Solver

People who are problem solvers get things done. It’s just that simple. Once you’ve gotten over the initial shock of whatever problem you’re facing, you need to stop and ask questions.

  • What options are available?
  • What’s the next step?
  • How can I make this work to my advantage?

You want to get to a place in life where you’re a problem solver, someone who makes things happen — instead of becoming a victim of life and watching the world pass you by. You gotta be a mover and shaker!

Become a Mover and a Shaker

To become a mover and a shaker you’ve got to go with the flow and learn to adjust your perspective. As humans we get very focused on what we want and what we need, before realizing that we might not be making the best decision for our circumstances.

Instead you’ve got to embrace other plans or idea and open yourself to different opportunities. If anyone hates the “go with the flow” mentality it’s me. As a control freak, I don’t like it when life throws me curve balls or succumbing to the emotion’s of other people.

But over the last few years, I’ve discovered that life doesn’t care what our plans are and sometimes you’ve got to make your own luck. Which means, you’ve just got to go with it and as much I hate to admit that, I’m a better person for it.

be a mover and a shaker

Be Proactive Not Reactive

People who choose to take the offensive position will make things happen and are more in control. Those that are on the defensive, only react when things happen to them and therefore have less control. Basically you want to make life happen, instead of letting life happen to you!

To become a proactive person, you’ve got to prepare for obstacles before they even occur. No, you don’t need to be a fortune teller to see the future – you just need to be smart and attentive to what’s happening around you.

For instance; if you only have one source of income with no backup plan, if you experience a job loss or other emergency, your life will be turned completely upside down.

But if you’re a proactive person, you will foresee this issue and start creating multiple income streams, cutting back your lifestyle or taking out more life insurance coverage. You won’t always be able to prepare for everything life throws at you, but you can definitely prepare for them better.

Focus on the Positives

Some of my best experiences were born out of failure and when I thought my life was over. Instead of letting other people’s problems get the best of me, I’ve learned to look at the bright side. Granted you might not see the bright side till after the dust settles, but don’t give up hope.

In almost every situation in life there’s a silver lining, even in the last recession. Whatever life throws at you, whether it’s money problems, relationship failures or career issues, they can all be successfully handled if you apply these tips.

That’s the key to conquering anything in life: be someone who’s a problem solver and who’s proactive and not reactive.

About the author: Carrie Smith is the financial artist and editor behind Careful Cents. She helps creative entrepreneurs make a living with their creations, and reach financial freedom through systems and financial organization. She’s been featured in The Huffington Post, Glamour Magazine, Kiplinger Finance and several other business websites. In May 2013 she quit her full-time accounting job to pursue entrepreneurship and blogging. You can find her on Twitter or Instagram @carefulcents.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Robb August 25, 2012, 2:44 pm

    Sometimes I wonder how I kept getting up off the mat during my job search because I got knocked down so many times, it was incredibly demoralizing and even made me wonder if I had a future at all in this field because I’d been told “no” so much. I am very thankful I’ve yet to really have my personal life get demolished and you have my sympathies, I hope I never have to go through a divorce :(

    I think to go from reactive to proactive you almost have to change your philosophy of life – past, present, and future. Too many people just focus on one at the expense of the other, you have guys who are just existing – living the present, not really caring where they are going or where they’ve been. People living in the past, assuming nothing worthwhile is happening now or ever well and people looking so far forward they miss the amazing things going on now and trip because they didn’t pay attention to the past. The ideal way to live is to focus on all three – learning from the past, savoring the future, while looking forward to and preparing for the future. That is how to live a proactive life!

    • Carrie Smith August 28, 2012, 2:21 pm

      Going through a divorce is rough…to say the least, and I wouldn’t advise anyone to go through it. But in the end I’ve learned a lot about life and about myself as a person through it. Failure really is the best teacher and that’s the only you’ll grow.

      • Abkasoft October 30, 2013, 11:31 am

        I Absolutely agree with you!

  • Mo' Money Mo' Houses August 25, 2012, 6:51 pm

    These are great tips and things I try to do in my life but I’m also sort of a control freak and hate when I try and try and still things don’t go as I planned. But I am definitely getting better and letting things go and try to go with the flow more and be positive.

    • Carrie Smith August 25, 2012, 7:46 pm

      I definitely takes a lot of practice and patience, but I’ve been getting better and better at letting things go too. It’s by no means easy, but that’s how life is I guess.

  • Budget & the Beach August 26, 2012, 10:09 am

    Great article! I think right now I fall into the reactive AND proactive category. I do get worked up, but then get down to business. I’m working on being less reactive and going with the flow more. Hard to do with my type a personality. :)

  • Debtkiller August 26, 2012, 2:07 pm

    Wow. You and I have a lot in common (except that you’re already debt free). You’re absolutely right! I’m in the middle of getting divorced, my house is for sale, I have a ton of credit card debt, etc. I’ve learned that rather focusing on all of the negative in my life, I can shift my focus onto the positives and make the most of my situation. I believe in fate and for reasons not yet known to me, I was put into this situation for a reason. Love your advice of being “proactive not reactive.”

  • Llamaface August 28, 2012, 10:11 am

    This is a great article. Such simple advice and yet so hard to implement! I was once told that I am a great person for ‘always putting obstacles in the way of things’, which greatly upset me at the time as I realised I had actually become like that over a period of years. I am trying to move away from that now and become more positive and optimistic, so I will start thinking of myself as a ‘problem solver’, and will learn to focus on the solutions not the problems :)

    • Carrie Smith August 28, 2012, 2:20 pm

      You’re right! While the advice is simple, it’s definitely not easy to put into practice. It’s taken me a lot of years and time to get where I am today. And of course each day presents it’s own unique issues and problems that need to be “solved”. But that’s part of the fun in life.

  • Andi Perullo, L.Ac. September 1, 2012, 9:04 am

    Very inspiring and I try to live my life this way as well. :)

  • Carrie Smith September 1, 2012, 8:08 pm

    That’s so true and a very good quote to live by. If everything in life was easy, we would never grow and learn.

  • Dwayne Thomas September 7, 2012, 10:59 am

    I love this thought. Makes me look at my job in a whole new light