The term “financial freedom” is vague, but it’s a goal worth attaining. No matter what the phrase means to you — from being debt-free to paying off a mortgage — here are some ways to get there.

financial freedom
Set your goalThe first step toward gaining financial freedom is to determine what it means to you. Once you figure out your goal, you can then create and implement a plan to achieve it.
Track itMake sure you’re setting and sticking to a budget and marking the benchmarks you can celebrate along the way to your goal. You’ll have an incredibly hard time achieving financial freedom without tracking your money.
Cut backOnce you’re sticking to a solid budget, refine it. There’s a good chance you can trim your expenses and doing so will free up funds pushing you toward your goal.
Be ready for obstaclesRecognize obstacles on your journey to financial freedom. How do you deal with them? By having your emergency fund well-stocked. It should have enough to cover three-to-six months’ worth of expenses.
Stay investedIf your employer has a 401(k) – and better yet, matches contributions – stick with it. If you don’t have access to a 401(k), open a Roth or traditional IRA. Your money will grow faster when it’s invested.
Pay down debtIt’s hard to achieve financial freedom with debt, so make a plan to tackle it. Start with your highest interest debt first, then move on down the line.
Get your score upAs US News reports, your credit score plays a huge role in financial freedom. Be sure to closely monitor your credit report and do what you can to keep your score high. The higher your score, the easier achieving your goal will be.