Every beginning of a new year many people draft a set of financial resolutions they would like to achieve before the year comes to an end. However, according to research one out of four individuals who come up with financial goals at the beginning of a year almost forget what they wanted to attain before the second month comes to an end. And thus the cycle continues; we make more resolutions, fail to achieve them, get disappointed and set other targets to accomplish – which we fail to reach too.
It’s time to do things differently. Don’t fall victims again this year! Achieve your financial goals this year by-:
1. Being S.M.A.R.T
Not literally, but by making your goals Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-bound.
What do you want to achieve? Is it to invest, save or settle all your debts? How are you going to achieve your set goals? When? With whom? And what are the conditions and limitations? These are some of the questions you need to ask yourself when setting goals. Remember, no matter the goal, do not be vague.
Measurable financial resolutions help you to track your progress and stay motivated. Some of the questions that might help you answer this include; Are your goals quantifiable? Can you evaluate the progress and if yes, how are you going to evaluate the progress of every drafted resolution?
How much am I going to use?
Make sure you are in a position to achieve all the goals and you are willing to be selfless. Don’t exaggerate knowing too well your resolutions are impractical. Factor in constraints such as emergency expenses while drafting the said resolutions.
Ask yourself why you are setting these goals in the first place. Is it the right time? Make sure your financial resolutions matter to you, and that they also align with other relevant resolutions you might have.
Many are the times we set financial resolutions with sketchy timelines. A clear timeline of when you should attain each goal will be beneficial in keeping track of your progress. A good example of a time-bound goal: Save Ksh. 10,000 toward a down payment on a house by August 30th.
After coming up with a list of financial goals you want to achieve according to the S.M.A.R.T criteria, it’s time to prioritize your list – that’s if you have more than one financial resolution. You cannot do everything at once, thus you need to figure out which resolution gets the most priority so you can set your budget accordingly.
A budget helps in planning how much you’ll set aside for the financial goals put in place as well as help in keeping track of where your income is going. Once you’ve set aside money to cover your monthly expenses, you can decide how much of your remaining income you would like to go to your resolution. Remember set your budget with your priority resolutions in mind.
4. Motivate yourself
Attach a reward and cause to every financial resolution. Bumps in the road are inevitable, and most times we tend to give up because of this. By attaching a reward to each of your financial goals- whether it’s a vacation, a shopping treat or a dinner- you will remain inspired and committed along the way. Motivation can also come in a number of different ways; do what will encourage you more.
5. Online Technology
Online technology is evolving. Currently, there’s an abundance of free financial applications and tools that are readily available. These tools might assist in achieving financial success.
Looking to invest, there are applications that let you monitor your investment in real-time. Want to save up, opening a savings account is as easy as downloading an application on play store. Do you wish to pay off your student loans, there are online tools that help you keep track of your down payments. Automate as much as you can.