Hello Smart Money People,
Still working on your New Year Goals? It’s almost February 2018! Where did January go? Right about this time every year, people begin to lose momentum for the goals they set for the new year. They stop going to the gym, they forget the promise they made to themselves to eat better and they forget the financial goals they’ve set to win with money this year.
I want to encourage you to brush off those goals, if you wrote them down. If you didn’t write them down, I highly advise you to do so. Have a look at them again and get back on the horse. As the saying goes, nothing changes if nothing changes.
Goals become this big, ominous thing we set out to do and then we don’t do them. I am going to tell you why I think that is. Goals take time and we are impatient. So how do you change that? Determine what you need to do every day, not magically, but every day, that will take you one step closer to your goal. These daily tasks should not take more than 5 or 10 minutes.
Here are the 5 things you can do TODAY to help you get to your goal.
Let’s say your goal is to pay off your credit card:
- Get out the card and the bill and have a look at it.
- Highlight the common expenses: clothes, restaurants, groceries, gas, coffee, Amazon.
- Look at your budget and see how much you have allocated for those categories.
- Determine what you allocated to spend every week in those categories. For example, if you have $500 a month for groceries, that is $125 per week. Does your credit card bill reflect more than that?
- Commit to NOT spending one penny more in those categories than you have allocated in your budget.
- Look at your other categories for spending in your budget. Is there an area you may be able to cut back on this month and put that toward your credit card? You may need to be creative here. For example: maybe instead of eating out Friday night for $50, you may pick up a frozen pizza and a gallon of ice cream at the grocery store for $15. A savings of $35. Wa-La EXTRA credit card payment.
Every day ask yourself- what can I do today to pay off that credit card?
- Can I skip buying lunch and pack lunch today?
- Can I make my coffee at home?
- Can I sell something on Craig’s list?
- Can I pick up a part time job for a few months?
- Can I cut back on a category like clothes, eating out, online purchases?
- Can I invite the gang from work back to my house for happy hour on the back porch instead of the local restaurant?
- Can I put an extra $5 toward the monthly payment above and beyond what I am already committed too?
- Can we watch a movie from RedBox vs. going to the movies this week?
The key here is to focus on one big goal and do a few small things every day toward that goal. It will seem small. I get it. However, if you will do that over time, you WILL see great progress. In a matter of months with discipline and a written plan, you will be impressed with how far you’ve come.
Let me know what you think of this post by leaving a comment. It all takes work and discipline. I know you can do it.
You’ve got this.
Karen & Bill