★ Rockstar Money Challenge #1: What’s Your “Why”?

rockstar money challenges

Welcome to our first weekly money challenge! As much as we love reading about finances, none of it really matters unless you’re actually going to follow it up and TAKE ACTION.

So every Monday going forward, Derek from HowDoIMoney.com will be issuing a new money challenge to us all. These challenges will be simple, fun, and most importantly, will help you take another step towards growing your wealth. If it can be challenged, we will challenge it!

Your part is to accept each challenge and check it off your to-do list by the end of the week.

Think of it like getting a gold star in elementary school, only these stars actually help you retire earlier ;) We hope you’ll then go into the forums and share your answers with us so we can all learn and be inspired by them.

Here’s the first challenge – take it away, Derek!

This Week’s Challenge: Find Your “Why”

We’re starting with the main point of it all – the reason you’re on this site right now and are so eager to improve your finances. Why do you want to learn about (and hopefully save) money so badly? What’s the end goal with it all? The answer to this is your “why”.

Dig deep and go beyond “I want to get out of debt” or “I want to retire early”. Think about what it all truly means to you. Why do you spend so much time thinking about this stuff? Why do you care so much? How does it all really affect your life?

Take some time to think through your “why”.
Then, write it down somewhere where you’ll see it every day.

It can be a word, a sentence, a full paragraph or an entire book! What’s important is that it’s YOURS, and it drives all future actions going forward. Once written down, hop into our forums and share a picture of it! (Or at least tell us what your “why” is.) Our hope is that it inspires others to do the same, and ultimately motivate us all to keep striving for our best.

Here’s my “why”…

derek money why

As Frederick Nietzche once said, “He who has a why can endure any how.”

See you in the forums!

Derek, Master of Challenges


What a great start to the missions! So many of you accomplishing ’em this week – well done.

Here are some of our favorites:

My “why” = Security for me & my family.

My husband almost died of septic shock – he was on a ventilator in a coma for a week, away from home for a month in the hospital and rehab, had visiting nurses, more surgeries, and so on and so on. For me, that really crystallized the role of money in my life. The emergency fund/emergency plan ensured we could pay the bills. And now I know exactly why I’m saving and investing. -Chief Mom Officer (read the whole story)

Here’s My Why: I don’t want to be stuck having to work for the rest of my life. I want the flexibility to spend more time with family, to have my own family, and travel the world. My why is because I want to spend more of my time living and less time working. –The Finance Spa

Here’s a great one from Miss Mazuma using her dog as a model!

My “why” is that my family has a history of health issues and short life spans, so if I followed the traditional retirement path, there’s a possibility that I would have only a decade or less of retirement. I don’t want to spend my life living and working on someone else’s terms and never get the chance to do the things that I want to do. –Katrian

My childhood was non existent due to spending several years on the run in war torn Bosnia before we finally managed to escape to Germany. The loss of 30% of my whole family was extremely painful. 3 countries and several languages later my WHY is simple: I never want my children to experience not having a childhood. I never want them to worry about food, water, shelter and the most basic necessities in life. –Frugal Cop

Keep sharing your “Whys!” Either here or in the forums.

Derek heads up the Weekly Money Challenges here at Rockstar Finance and over in the Rockstar Money Forums. He also runs an outrageous blog and podcast over at HowDoIMoney.com – check it out!

Last modified: December 17, 2016

41 Responses to :
★ Rockstar Money Challenge #1: What’s Your “Why”?

  1. My why has changed over the years. It started as to never fear running out of money as my parents did as a kid. Today I’m beyond that so its to reach a point where I can travel the world while keeping the original tenet.

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      Traveling the world would be amazing. My wife and I (and our 1 year old!) traveled for 7 months last year in a travel trailer around the US. It was a life changing experience!

      Thanks for sharing your “why”!

  2. Debbie says:

    To ensure our children won’t need to help us out in retirement and that we might be able to help them financially with student debt/housing/weddings

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      That’s a great “why”.

      I’ve heard of lots of situations about how taking care of aging parents can be pretty tough on everyone especially when there is little to no savings/retirement money to help.

      Thanks for sharing!

  3. J. Money says:

    My why is to be able to wake up and work on whatever the hell I want without having to think about money.

    Which is ironic since to get to that point we always have to be thinking of our money :)

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      Something tells me you would still be doing what you are doing now!

      I guess we will find out soon when you cross the $1 Million dollar mark? Maybe $3 million?

      Thanks for sharing J!

  4. Martha primera says:

    My why is to take a vacation with the boyfriend without having to worry about bills piling up. Since he works construction he doesn’t get vacation days most of our vacations have been local and 3 days tops. I’m dying to go to Costa Rica or Spain

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      That’s a fantastic “why”. Very motivating.

      Thanks for sharing!

  5. Kurt says:

    My foremost ‘why’ has been unchanged for decades: to give me the freedom to pursue what interests me. Self-indulgent? You betcha! :)

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      lol, love it.

      What is interesting you these days Kurt?

  6. Melanie says:

    My “why” is to secure a comfortable retirement for my husband and I as self-employed people and to be a good financial example to our kids.

    1. Derek Olsen says:


      I feel ya’

      My wife and I have been self-employed for 2 years now. It’s thrilling and scary all at the same time. (Like you know…) You’ve gotta do things a little differently to earn that retirement as a self-employed person/couple.

      Good luck!

  7. Fat Chance says:

    My why is to be able to take a chance on the next opportunity that comes my way. Hey FC, want to move to ______ and start a ______?: YES! because I have enough $$ stored to not stress about the unknown. Instead of: No, I need to keep my corporate job as it is stable and pays the bills.

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      That’s what I’m talking about!

  8. NZ Muse says:

    Peace of mind. Financial stability lets me sleep at night and reduces my stress.

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      Absolutely. Great “why”.

      Thanks for sharing!

  9. Joan Young-Santiago says:

    My why is to feel and be in control financially for the 2nd half of my life. Which means to change my day to day options & circumstances. Access to more money means more options and I want that! Starting at the beginning and not afraid to do it!

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      Fantastic. Go get ’em!!!!

  10. Avenger2354 says:

    My “Why” is also to wake up each day and spend it doing exactly what I want, having replaced earned income with passive income and pensions.

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      Every dollar is a soldier.

  11. Scott W says:

    Lots of good answers above that all appeal to me but if I had to say just one it would be:

    To eliminate by biggest worry from my life which is not having enough money to live a comfortable life with my family.

  12. My why is to control my financial future. To reach a point where I can continue to work because I enjoy what I do and feel that I bring value, not because I have to.

  13. Jef says:

    Thanks for setting up these challenges guys!
    My why is about being able to give back meaningfully to the world (including family, friends and those that are less fortunate) along with being able to live life on my terms

    Love your work and keep it up :)

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      Thanks Jef!! We are having a lot of fun with this challenge. It’s only the first of many to come.

  14. My why is to not worry about how we’ll afford it when a family emergency happens (there’s enough worry with that as it is). And also because I’d love to add a second bathroom to our home. (It would be a nice luxury for our family of seven!)

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      Wow. I guess that bathroom is used all day long! Nice to not have to worry so much about emergencies when you have the cash to cover them they aren’t really emergencies after all.

  15. Emilie Burke says:

    My why: I know that I will be caring for aging parents at the same time that I’m hoping to be raising kids. I need to set myself up for that now so that I don’t destroy my financial win when I reach that stage of life.

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      Lot’s of people struggle when it comes to taking care of aging parents. This is a great “why”.

      Thanks for sharing Emilie!

  16. Archie says:

    My “why” is to be able to make choices I want to make. To be able to have morals and be able to stand behind them. I do what I want to do instead of have to do. To have the choice to say no to the things that dont sit well with me. To explore the world for the sake of exploring. To be curious and learn about anything that peaks my curiosity without having to decide if its a worthy investment (time or money) to make. To live free of worries about being a burden to someone – my parents, siblings, partner, children or society as a whole.

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      Being able to say “no” is huge.

  17. Rusouci says:

    My whys are to have the freedom to fully pursue my passion of writing on my terms with no pressure or need for it to produce income. I want to be as creative as possible with as little distractions as possible and want my family’s quality of life to stay at what it is now. Thanks to all of you in the personal finance community for helping me see that this is possible and will happen.

    1. Derek Olsen says:


      “Thanks to all of you in the personal finance community for helping me see that this is possible and will happen.”

      Give yourself the credit, you took the steps needed to make it happen. But, glad we could help! ;)

  18. TinaP says:

    My why is simply so I can spend my time how I choose – and have the freedom to change it as life changes.

  19. My WHY is – Never to dress up in the morning and wade through peak hour traffic for hours & spend quality time with family to travel all around. I love myself to see trekking up in high Himalayas – away from mobile networks, worrying about emails from client :)

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      Another great “why”. Thanks for sharing.

  20. Amy Murphy says:

    My why is to retire a millionaire, live debt free, stress free and to teach others to do the same. Along the way I will enjoy experiences and people, not the accumulation of things.

  21. Jody Newton says:

    1) My father doesn’t understand money and has made many terrible decisions, and keeps trying to pass that one in “lessons.” 2) My divorce was final a week and a half ago, and I spent 15 years trying to wrangle him into good habits. I’m starting fresh and with almost no debt.

    I’m tired of giving my power away. I guess this is my “why.”

    1. Derek Olsen says:

      Sorry for the messes around you. But I really like your “why”.

  22. I want to be able to build a passive income stream which will allow me to work less and spend more time with my family. I’ve recently become a dad and there’s nothing I love more than my wonderful son, priority #1 is to provide him with a good life, and money will simply help with that…

    1. J. Money says:

      yeah it will! congrats, man :)

  23. Kadisha R Haynes says:

    My why is to get out of debt and to obtain financial freedom. This would assist in facilitating goals I have such as retiring early and being able to financially provide for myself and my family.

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