5 Tips to CRUSH your 2019 Financial Goals
We've all been there. We set New Year's resolutions to get our finances together. We enter 2019 full of ambition and excitement to crush our goals. Then 3 weeks pass by and the motivation wanes. 3 Months go by and you don't even remember what goals you've set for yourself.
Here I'm going to share 5 tips to help you take control of your finances during 2019. Whether your goals is to spend less, pay off debts, save up for a large purchase, or start investing, these tips will help you reach your goals. Here are the tips:
1. Reflect on Last Year
Before you start crushing your 2019 financial goals, you need to see how 2018 did for you. Many people assume that they should ignore 2018 and start with a clean slate. The reality is that your actions (or inactions) in 2018 are a good indicator of what to do differently in 2019. You want to ask yourself these 3 questions:
1. What was my biggest financial win last year?
2. What was a positive financial habit I had last year?
3. What would I do differently this year?
With the first question, you want to see your biggest win to help you have a benchmark to work off of for your financial goals. With the second one, you want to see what habit you want to reinforce as you take on your new goals. And with the last question, take one thing to help you adjust your actions.
The reality is, your financial results are driven by your actions, which is driven by your habits. If you can be aware of the positive habits to reinforce and negative habits to work on, you will build a strong foundation for your goals.
2. Set Big Goals
A counter-intuitive aspect of goal setting is that many people will tell you to set "realistic" goals. Ones that are easy to achieve. The problem with this is that it doesn't excite you. It doesn't push you to take the actions and build the momentum needed to reach your goals. This is why BIG goals are important. They will motivate you to start taking the actions you wouldn't do otherwise. Really, you want a balance between a big audacious goal and one that you still believe you can achieve. If it's too big to the point that you don't think you can do it, then you will sooner than later you will feel deflated and unmotivated. A good rule of thumb is that it's big enough to scare you but attainable enough that you still gets you excited.
3. Make your Goals Concrete
Being concrete with your goals is very important. It's very simple, but it's easily overlooked. Imagine if you wanted to save for a down payment. Do you know where you want your house? What type and size of property do you want? How much is it for the area you want? How much of that do you need in form of a down payment do you need? How much do you have to save every pay-cheque to reach that goal this year?
These are the questions you need to get CLEAR with your goals. If you're not crystal clear with what you need to get, you lose focus throughout your day-to-day. You want to break it down into metrics you could measure on a monthly, weekly, and daily basis. It will help you see how you progress over the months and how to adjust your actions.
One thing to notes is that having your goals concrete doesn't mean knowing exactly HOW to reach those goals. You need to let room for creativity to help you achieve your goals. You'll be surprised, it only takes one shift or tweak to reach your goals. You need to be open-minded to different avenues to reach your goals.
4. Remind yourself Every Single Day
Most people forget their goals 3 weeks into the New Year. How important could your goals be to you if you can't remember them?
What you want to do is create a habit to write down your goals every single morning. Make the intention clear every morning what you are focusing your energy towards. This will keep you driven, motivated, and focused. It'll guide your decisions every day in regard to your time, energy, and money.
5. Hold Yourself Accountable
It's very easy to drop and forget your goals when you stop seeing progress. It's even easier to brush it under the rug and forget about it. It's hard for us to keep ourselves accountable, but we go above and beyond to help others stay accountable. Here are a few ways to get support to reach your goals:
1. Get a friend who you trust and feel safe sharing your goals. Get them to hold your feet to the fire. Make a bet, where the stakes are high enough for you to take it seriously.
2. Change your environment. Find friends with similar goals, ambitions, and who you want to be like. Surround yourself with them, hang out with them, pick up their habits and mannerisms.
3. Join a local or online community with people who are also striving for their financial goals. You will find people who have the same struggles as you. You guys can help support each other.
Don't underestimate the power of being in the right environment. Being around 2-3 people who bring the best out of you will be the #1 biggest thing you can do to reach your 2019 financial goals.
If you implement these 5 tips, you will get more progress this upcoming year than the past 3 years combined. Take the time in the beginning of 2019 to set the foundation for the rest of the year.