Have you set any financial goals?
Does this New Year = a New You?? Have you goals, targets, a strategy planned for 2020? Have you thought about what you would like to achieve by this time next year? As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not a believer in ‘Monday’ or fad diets. This post is about taking control of (long term) personal finances. Making lasting change that will positively impact your future.
Resolution versus Goals. While many make resolutions in January, I tend to do my goal list in January (and review it throughout the year). Is there a difference between them? I think of goals as written targets. It’s my list of what I’d like to achieve in the coming months. Learn something new, hit new targets, meet new people, learn about new software… the list is always varied and I action it as I would a priority list. What’s going to have the biggest impact on my life? Whichever it is, that’s the one I’ll aim for first.
Each year I write about goals (here’s the 2017 link Financial goal setting and planning for 2017 ) I know various clients introduce personal budgets each year and noticed the positive impact it has on their life. Taking control of your finances can feel empowering. Even taking that small step to set up a new savings account or up the amount going into your savings per month, can be the start of taking control.
When I talk or write about saving, it always starts along the same basic line;
Work out what you can afford to live on per month and save first.
Simple idea. What do I hear most often? That people have a small amount of savings usually set up to leave their account after payday, along with the intention of saving what is left at the end of the month. How often does that additional ‘end of month’ saving take place? Not often. Some months pass and no additional funds are transferred to savings at all. Yet when we go back over a few months, sometimes it isn’t even remembered where the additional money went. That’s when it hits home, you haven’t got control of your finances.
If this sounds familiar, maybe you don’t feel 100% in control of your spending (or saving) or would like to top up that savings account and plan for the future, start as you mean to go on. Sit down and work out your spending budget per month this week and set up something simple straight away to look after the YOU of the future.
While living for today and spending what we have can feel enjoyable, having a plan for the future, knowing when you’d like to retire or cut back working so much, or just knowing you can afford to take time off if it’s needed, is a fantastic feeling too. When we’re at our most stressed, having financial pressure on top of any other worry only adds to the pressure.
As with any goal, the key is not to get overwhelmed. Small, lasting changes can be made without overthinking it. Changes can only come with action.
Take control, make a plan. Then ACTION it.
Happy financial goal setting for 2020.