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Do you have financial goals? Almost everyone has financial goals whether they realize it or not. Financial goals are those things that you are working towards, whether you want to end the month with $10 extra dollars, or you want to start a new side hustle, or you want to pay down one of your debts in two months, those are all different financial goals. Here’s a list of 6 financial goals to create to save money.
Many people create financial goals without even realizing it, but it is important to take note of your goals and write them down. It’s hard to imagine that creating goals can really help you gain better traction with your finances, but believe it or not, goals are one of the most important aspects of healthy finances.
It’s hard to believe that simply writing your goals down will help you in any way other than offering you the satisfaction of crossing something off of your to-do list, but it actually helps you improve your financial situation.
Creating healthy financial goals will give you something to strive towards with your finances. Because, let’s face it, not every day of your financial journey is going to be just peachy. There are going to be days when you want to give up, and when it simply doesn’t feel worth it to keep pushing forward.
THERE WILL COME TIMES IN YOUR FINANCIAL JOURNEY WHEN YOU WANT TO QUIT.
Those are the exact times when it is so important to have your goals written down for you to look at to help you remember why you’re doing what you’re doing, and why you’re going to keep pushing forward.
HOW TO CREATE HEALTHY FINANCIAL GOALS THAT ARE DOABLE
One thing that scares many people away is creating impossible financial goals. While it is healthy to shoot for the stars, it is also important to remember to set easy goals. Goals like “save up $1,000,000 before I turn 50” are financial goals that are much harder to reach and though they are doable, they will require a lot more time than goals like “pay all monthly bills on time and have an extra $100 at the end of the month.”
It is important to set both types of goals, you want long-term and short-term goals.
The reason why you want a mixture of both types of goals is because if you only set long-term goals it will become easy to get discouraged because you will be working yourself to the bone with nothing to show for it until you finally reach that goal, but it might be years and years down the road.
This is where short-term goals come into play. Here your short-term goals will allow you to get the feeling of success as you achieve these goals, no matter how small they are, and it will be just the push that you need to keep striving towards your bigger goals.
The reason why it is important to not only set short-term goals is because if you have 10 short-term goals, but complete them all in just a short few months, you then have nothing left to work towards and the goals might start to seem too easy for you. Here is where it is important to have your harder, long-term goals in check to remind yourself that you are working towards bigger and better things.
WHAT ARE SHORT-TERM GOALS?
A short-term goal is ultimately a goal that you set that you want to achieve within the next week, month, or even year. They are the goals that are doable in a shorter amount of time, and they may not be as big of goals as your long-term goals.
WHAT ARE LONG TERM GOALS?
Long-term goals are goals that will take a longer time to achieve. Goals that may even take upwards of 5 years to accomplish. These goals are often bigger than your short-term goals, and therefore will take significantly longer to reach.
Goals should not be confused with your hopes, dreams, or wishes. Those are all great, but they are things that you don’t put much effort into. They are things that you mostly just hope or wish would happen. Goals are something that you are telling yourself you are going to achieve, and they are the things that you work towards every single day.
6 FINANCIAL GOALS TO CREATE TO SAVE MONEY
If you’re swamped and don’t know which financial goals you should create, start by identifying the goals you already have – the goals you might not even know you have.
1. START WITH GOALS YOU ALREADY HAVE
What are you working towards with your finances? Are you merely trying to make it through a month without going into debt, or are you desperately trying to save every extra penny that comes into your possession?
Take a moment to work through any financial goals that you already have, whether you knew you had them or not. Write them down, those are good goals to start with.
Once you’ve written down your current goals, work them into more detail. If your goal is to simply come out of this month with some money to spare, ask yourself how much extra money you want to end the month with? What are you going to do to make sure you can achieve this short-term goal?
Starting with goals that you already have is the best way to get an idea of your natural financial goals. The goals that you really want to work towards, whether you knew it already or not. These will be the goals that you are going to have the easiest time continuing to work towards because they are the ones that feel right for you.
The goals that you already have, without even realizing it, are going to be the best goals you can create. They are your foundation financial goals, the ultimate list of goals that all your future goals will stem out of.
2. HAVE A HEALTHY EMERGENCY FUND
Emergency funds are those things that some people would never live without, while other people have barely given them a thought. Nonetheless, they are super important and should be a necessity for everyone.
Unfortunately, the truth of it is, no one knows if or when an emergency is going to happen that all the sudden requires them to take time off of work or heaps a large, unexpected bill onto their plate. This is why having a well-stocked and healthy emergency fund is vital.
Experts suggest having at least 3 to 6 months of wages saved up in your emergency fund. If that sounds absolutely overwhelming, start small. Start by creating an emergency fund of $1,000, then once you’ve reached that, add another $1,000, and so on.
Having an emergency fund will give you peace of mind that if an emergency ever does happen, you will be financially prepared for it.
Living below your means might not sound like much of a financial goal at all, but it surprisingly is. Living below your means now, when you have the option to live in much more expensive ways, will ensure that in the case of a sudden job loss or pay cut, you won’t sink into debt.
Living below your means will also allow you to save money faster and pay off debts faster.
Rather than living up to your means and spending every money you make, living on less and putting that extra money towards savings and debt payments will ensure you have more money later on in life, and in any circumstance that comes your way.
4. HAVE A PLAN FOR RETIREMENT
Something I’ve noticed many people do is forget about retirement. Now, I’m not entirely sure if they are forgetting about retirement, or if they are just choosing not to plan for it now. Either way, both of those scenarios should be avoided.
If you’re looking for a smart financial goal to set right now, let it be this one. Planning for retirement should be a part of everyone’s financial goals, because one day retirement will be here, and what you did earlier on in your life will determine what you can do later in your life.
If you made poor financial choices when you were young and refused to plan for your future retirement, you may have to work well into your old age just to pay the bills. But, if you made smart money decisions and decided to plan for your retirement early on, even though it felt like it was forever away, you will be able to comfortably retire.
So, which one will it be for you? It’s never too early, or late, to start planning for retirement.
5. PAY OFF DEBT
If you have debt, a good financial goal to create is to pay off that debt. But, deciding to pay off your debt isn’t enough in itself.
Once you make the decision to pay off your debt, you will have to figure out your detailed plan, what you are going to do, how you are going to do it, and write it all down on paper so you can remember it and start taking the actionable steps.
Make a plan to get out of debt so you can stop throwing your money away in interest payments. Debt accumulates faster than you may expect, so the sooner that you decide to start working towards paying off your debt, the more money you will be saving yourself in the long run.
6. ACCUMULATE SAVINGS
Once you have a comfortable emergency fund in place and a solid plan for retirement, it is time to start saving your money in a separate savings account. This money is money that can be used at a later time for a variety of things.
Your savings account money isn’t tied down as much as your emergency fund and retirement fund. Instead, your savings account could be for house and car maintenance, any unexpected bills, family vacations, or other stuff.
The money in your savings account is for your use, but don’t blow it all in one go. Make it your ultimate goal to keep your savings above a certain amount, that could be over $1,000 or $20,000 – the number you choose is up to you – at all times. If you use some of your savings, work hard and save like crazy until you’re back above the amount you have chosen for that account.
Now that you have laid a good foundation for creating and managing your financial goals, it’s time to start implementing everything you’ve learned. Go ahead and create financial goals. Create goals for long-term and for short-term.
If you’re ready to take the next step with your finances, The Ultimate Budget Breakdown is exactly what will take you from where you are, to a place of complete financial freedom. You can find it here.
What are some of the financial goals that you already have, that you may have not even known about? What are some financial goals that you are going to create in the future? Do you thrive on short-term financial goals or long-term financial goals better?
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Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Romans 12:12