SMART Goals

Did you know that the majority of people have given up on their new years resolutions by the end of January?  When it comes to your personal finances, don't let the same happen by setting clear realistic goals.   Your goals should be:  

*Specific*  What exactly are you going to accomplish? For example, rather than saying you want to eliminate your debt, your goal should indicate paying off a specific amount of a specific debt.    

*Measurable*  What metrics will you use to track your progress?   For example, rather than saying you want to simply “get better with your money” your goal should be trackable for instance “increase my emergency fund to 3 months of savings”.    

*Achievable*  Is your goal actually possible?  And possible within the time frame you set.  For example, don't commit more than your useable income towards debt repayment (unless you have a whole bunch of personal belongings you plan to sell).   

*Relevant*  Does this goal align with your other overarching financial goals?   For example, if your long-term goal is to save for a house by next year, you wouldn’t want to divert all that money towards going on vacation.   

*Time-bound*  When is the deadline (or better yet, when are the multiple check in points) for reaching your goal?   Also, maybe you need to set when you will begin working towards your goal.   For example, instead of an opened ended “I want to save money or pay off debt” with no timeline in mind, you can set a goal with a target completion date such as "by September 1st, I want to have enough saved to purchase a new car".   

*Extra tips:*  
• Write down your goal.  Put your goal on a post-it note where you'll be reminded often or set up reminders in the calendar on your phone.    
• Reward yourself.   Give yourself a reason to be excited and keep you motivated.  Maybe it’s treating yourself to a nice dinner once you reach your goal.   
• Make it automatic.  If there are any things you can put on autopilot -- do it!  For instance, if can set up an automatic transfer out of your checking account into your “car fund” savings account 
• Consider breaking larger sized goals into smaller pieces.  Creating measurable sub goals can help keep momentum.    

So what are your money goals that you're struggling with?  Let me know what you're working on and reach out if you want to work together.   

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