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We're starting off with "Becoming Goal Oriented: Planning Your Goals." What does that have to do with money? Everything.
Have you heard of the book Start with Why by Simon Sinek? If you haven't, go check it out! The main concept is this, begin with the end in mind. I want you to start thinking about the goals you have for you life. Buying a home, paying off loans, sending kids to college, sure those are the typical ones I hear. Those are fine, but what about traveling to Germany to see your homeland. Or starting your own business, getting in shape—all of these things in our lives typically take money. The lives we want to live and the goals that we have for our lives take money to accomplish them. It may not be a ton of money, and we can be frugal and get deals and be smart, but it.still.takes.money (insert handclap emoji).
This is the central goal of my planning firm and this blog. If you don't read anything I ever write again, read this:
The person you are becoming depends on the decisions you make today. Most of those decisions typically are tied back to money acting as a facilitator. Learning how to effectively manage, grow, and protect your finances will dramatically improve your odds of becoming the person that you want to be so that you can live the life you desire.
To really start you have to own it. Everything is 100 percent up to you. Don't blame anything on parents, school, spouses, children, work or anything. Check out a book called Extreme Ownership. It's a great way to learn how to take accountability for your life and understand that everything is up to you—even your finances.
If you haven't heard of a SMART goal I won't go into too much detail, just google it. The basics are this:
As you set and plan your life and financial goals, keep in mind that you will need to break things down. If you want to buy a home in five years, you will need to know $XXX for a down payment. Divide it by five and now you know that by the end of this year your savings account should reflect one-fifth of $XXX (the down payment amount). If you want to be at a certain weight you will need to diet and exercise. What will that cost monthly? Weekly? Daily? How can you fit it into your budget? On the longer side of things what about retirement? Do you know how much you will need and want by age 65? Sometimes that can be overwhelming. If you break things down, you can know that if you're 25-years-old, you can say "I just need 1/40th of my retirement by next year."
To bring all of this together I recommend creating a vision board. I like to make mine with Google Slides or Microsoft PowerPoint. That way I have a digital copy that I can see from anywhere and won't lose. I can also edit the pictures and arrange the word anywhere I'd like. This is like using the law of attraction. Post what you want in the future and write it with present tense. Add emotion and pictures.
- I'm so relieved that I've paid off my student loans (picture of bubble bath)!
- I'm grateful we were able to find the home of our dreams (insert McMansion).
- I'm thrilled that I went to the 2020 Olympics (picture of Olympic stadium).
- We're blessed to have grown our family (picture of crib).
Whatever your goals or endeavors are we need to start with those. It's the beginning of the year, it's time to make the changes that you've always wanted. We will need those goals in mind so that when we're adjusting our spending, paying down debt, asking for a raise or adjusting our lives to accommodate for a loved one we can remember what we're doing it all for!