Staying on track: financial goals
New year, new you, right? For many people, new year’s resolutions include financial goals, but what happens when the excitement of a new year wears off?
Setting goals is the easy part. Following through, however, is another story. Whether you want to build a nice savings cushion or pay off debt, there are steps to help keep you motivated and on track.
To help you stay focused and achieve your financial goals this year, check out these tips:
Save with a friend
It’s always easier to stay motivated when a friend or partner is trying to meet a goal, as well. You can keep each other accountable, offer motivation when one of you gets discouraged and share the highs and ride out the lows in each other’s journey.
Make mini goals
It’s easy to become overwhelmed and lose focus if you dwell on the big picture. For example, if your goal is to save $1,000 by July, don’t fixate on that dollar amount. Instead, break up your big goal into mini goals. Your first big accomplishment might be to save $250 by the end of February, which is a more attainable and less panic-inducing objective. Setting smaller goals and achieving them will reinforce your dedication.
Get help from a coach
Just as you might consult a personal trainer to help you get in shape, a financial coach can strengthen your money habits, in order to help reach your goal. A coach is particularly helpful if you don’t know where to start, experience frequent setbacks or need assistance staying focused.
Reward yourself along the way
Maintaining your money motivation can be difficult, especially over a long period of time. That’s why it’s important to treat yourself along your savings journey.
If you hit a benchmark, like a mini goal you’ve set, do something nice for yourself. Treat yourself to a modest reward. Just make sure you don’t blow your budget on a big celebration. That kind of defeats the purpose.