In high school, Brooke Schoenman took a trip to Italy with her Latin class. She returned home determined to see more of the world.

I remember being fascinated with how people like me were living in other parts of the world, speaking different languages, she wrote in an email.

And that fascination would stay with her, leading her to take the biggest adventure of her life.

At 23, while working full-time as a assistance desk agent, Brooke made up her mind she would devote herself two years to save enough fund to travelling the world.

She wasnt merely working toward saving for a vacation or two. No, she wished to spend a minimum of one full year living abroad, fully immersed in other cultures.

So she made a plan: She would cut down on unnecessary expenses. Shed sign up for overtime at work. Shed used to go less. Shed take part-time undertakings. Shed downsize her lifestyle in every route possible all with the goal of saving up $30,000 in two years to fund her escapade .

It wouldnt be easy saving that much fund, but Brooke was decided. And she was fortunate enough to be able to devote as much of her day, money, and energy as she could muster to her ambitious plan.

“There was a period that I would work at my day chore from 7:30 am to 4 pm, ” she wrote on Making Sense of Cents, “and then head off to do some evening waitressing … from 5 to 10 pm. ”

It's the kind of schedule many people who need to bring in extra cash to cover their fiscal objectives and needs are familiar with.

And it was worth it for her.

I believe having a bigger-than-life objective in mind helped, Brooke explains. I was saving for a life-changing experience something so far from what was normal to me and anyone I knew at the time. It was exciting!

Along the way, she celebrated even the smallest victories.

If I took a change jar to the bank and it was twice as much as I thought it would be, I would make a point to celebrate, ” Brooke writes, “and sometimes I would allow a little splurge.

The occasional treat was just as important as celebrating the small wins.

“I tried to cut out everything in the beginning, but soon became aware that the mental toll of less fun and less freedom to eat out or go to the movies was too much, Brooke writes. You have to budget in some fun money, even when you're going for a big huge objective.

By doing this, she didnt get overwhelmed by the magnitude of her goal. She remained motivated.( Knowing that you're not starving yourself of all life's pleasures is important for any savings goal. It means you can actually stick to your scheme instead of burning out too early .)

A year and a half in, Brooke had saved $23,000. She decided that was enough.

Brooke describes herself as someone who dislikes to wait.” So, she explains, When I started to get close to my fall-back aim of $25,000( about $23,000 after airliner tickets and gear ), I decided that starting my life of travel half a year earlier was an acceptable option.”

So, she bought her airliner tickets and set off to traveling the world.

Traveling was more fulfilling than Brooke could have imagined.

From archeological excavates in Menorca, Spain, to watching the jungle wake up at sunrise in Tikal, Guatemala, she pushed herself far beyond her convenience zone and experienced things that many merely dream of. She even decided to make Sydney, Australia, her new home.

She's continued to lean on the tips-off and tricks she learned during that year and a half to fund other( shorter) adventures, like a three-and-a-half-month journey to Turkey, China, Mongolia, Russia, and Kyrgyzstan.

Today, Brooke's budgeting isn't nearly as extreme as it was for her initial aim, but she remains money conscious.

And she's helping others save too by sharing advisory opinions and traveling narratives on her website: Though her site's geared toward travelers, her tips are relevant for anyone saving toward a objective.( This calculator is also a big help in figuring out how to reach your savings goals .)

Brooke genuinely believes that saving up for a big goal is achievable. Though, she adds, saving doesn't come in a one-size-fits-all package .

Everyone will have different circumstances surrounding their saving process. Maybe the cost of living where they are is higher or perhaps they can't forego hanging with friends at bars and eateries, Brooke writes. Once you can pinpoint the real reason the saving isn't running, you can exam out alternative strategies and budgets until one runs.

Saving is hard. There's no doubt about it.

And $ 23,000 is a lot of fund. For someone doing their best to merely get by, such a large sum in such a short time frame may not always be possible.

But Brooke attained the sacrifices she needed to save for the future she foresaw. And her experience shows that with perseverance, objectives that seem like dreams can be attainable it just takes patience, planning, and time.

So while your savings objective may not be a trip around the world, securing your fiscal future is just as exciting. Because while we never know what the future holds, preparing financially helps open some doorways. Help make your dreamings a reality by defining your financial goals today .

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