When you sit down and actually start thinking about setting your financial goals, it’s perfectly understandable to feel overwhelmed or have no clue where to start, especially if you’ve never set any financial goals before. But a great place to start is by asking yourself “what does financial success mean to me?
You have to ask what financial success means to you because everyone’s idea of financial success is very different. For some people, financial success is financial security in knowing that you never have to stress about money. For others, financial success is living in a luxury house and driving a foreign car.
The key to success in reaching your financial goals is that you have to visualize exactly where you want to be in the present and future and ensure that your aspirations line up with your life values.
Follow these tips to reach your short-term and long-term financial goals.
Find Your “Why”
Ok, so we know that you want to reach your financial goals, but why do you want to reach them? Determining the reasons behind your goals is what’s going to put them into a real-life perspective and fuel your motivation to aggressively reach those goals. Maybe your motivation is to get rid of credit card debt or to have a sizable downpayment for a house.
Assess Your Financial Situation
After determining your “why,” you might come to a place where you have no clue where to go from here, and that’s okay. You want to look at your financial status right now, and based on that, you’ll be able to determine the direction you need to go in attacking your goals. This will also help you sort out your goals and easily determine which ones are short-term or long-term.
You’ll need to look at these four areas:
- Net Worth
- Income Tax Status
Based on that information, you’ll be able to prioritize your goals, whether it be paying off debt, creating a monthly budget, or save for retirement.
Think With a S.M.A.R.T. Mindset
When you think SMART, you’re not just thinking about the goals themselves, you’re also thinking about what you need to do to reach those goals, and it starts with a plan.
SMART stands for:
For the goals you have, you have to be SMART when creating your plan of attack to reach those goals. That means making sacrifices like thinking twice before splurging on a new car you know you can’t afford right now or figuring out how to cut your monthly expenses in half. For instance, when you start to create your budget, you want to look for gaps, meaning, areas that can be reduced or eliminated.
An example would be figuring out how to lower your utility costs… A simple solution would be to go to https://www.choosesolar.com and switch from traditional electricity to alternative electricity.
Write Everything Down and Organize It
Now that you’ve determined your goals and how you plan to execute them with a SMART mindset, the next step is to put it in writing, whether you use a spreadsheet or write it in a notebook. However you choose to keep track, just make sure it’s in written form for you to refer back to and mark off as you reach your goals.
Be Proud of Yourself
Setting goals can sometimes feel like a chore, but once you start accomplishing those goals, you start to feel like a rockstar, and that’s something to be proud of. As you start accomplishing your more serious goals, you can have fun with goal-setting and start setting fun goals like vacations at all-inclusive resorts out of the country!