Hello, how do you feel today?
It’s Mike from Fabulously Broke, are you ready to press fast forward in your life and get excited by what is coming up for you? Today’s lesson is about setting goals and tracking them so you reward yourself for becoming a personal finance maven!
Day #11: It’s Now Time to Press Fast Forward!
If you have made it this far, it’s because you are incredibly motivated. KUDOS TO YOU! But I know how motivation can fade away. After all, I have sent you several emails for the past 6 weeks but your quest to control your personal finance doesn’t end with this email (duh!). So, how can you keep up your motivation? How can you make sure that you won’t fall back into your old habits again? You know what? controlling your personal finance is as hard as losing weight and keeping a hard body. But there is a trick to keep your motivation at a high level at all times: I call it The Fast Forward Method.
This method is quite simple: all you need to do is to set goals. But not any kind of goals, they must be SMART GOALS:
ü Specific: I
ü Measurable: I
ü Attainable: I
ü Relevant: I
ü Time-Bound: I
As you can see, SMART GOALS are more oriented and achievable goals than a simple New Year’s resolution. The point is that having goals is not enough; you need a plan that goes with each of your goals.
ü If you want to pay off your debts; you need a plan. Reducing your payments, cutting down your expenses, getting a raise, selling your crap, etc
ü If you want to get an income raise; you need a plan. Improving systems at work, taking on more projects, getting additional certifications, etc.
ü If you want to manage to stick to your budget; you need a plan. Leaving your credit cards at home, registering at Mint.com and following-up weekly, post your net worth on your blog, etc.
Fast Forwarding Your Life Makes You Dream
What I like the most about setting goals is that I can imagine myself in a year, 5, 10 and even 30 years from now. And THIS is very motivating. I like to dream about the day that I’ll be debt free, traveling across the world or simply about the day that I will bring my kids to Disney World (and this is only a few months away now!). How all of this is possible? You only need a simple plan to make it happen.
Need Help To Calculate Your Goals?
If you are making extra payments on your loan of if you want to save for retirement, calculating your goals may sounds like a pain similar to having your wisdom teeth removed. I don’t expect you to become an expert in financial planning, but you can surely use some calculators to see if your goals are achievable or not. I’ve done some research and found a great resource at Young Money. They offer a wide variety of calculators from debt repayment to investment projections.
I won’t lie to you, chances are that you will need a financial advisor to help you calculate your goals. And this is perfectly fine! If you feel that you need help in your quest to control your personal finances, don’t hesitate to seek professional help. Forget about your neighbor or your in-laws; go to a professional CFP that will provide you with great advice.
Wow, you did it! You went through 11 Days to Control Your Finance! If you have seen some results, I really would like you to take a few minutes to send me an email and tell me how you did it.
I’ll be preparing a version 2.0 of this series, send me your suggestions!