Have you heard the expression from the dental industry – “Only brush the teeth you plan to keep?” It’s designed to make us remember why daily brushing is so important – to keep our teeth!
Along those same lines, I would to like to encourage you to only set financial goals in 2017 that you actually plan to accomplish. In other words, only set goals that you know you have the dedication to see thru to completion.
That may sound a little strange, but oftentimes goals are set in a “I would like to accomplish…” manner. It’s great to want to save more money, but what good is it if you don’t take the necessary steps towards reaching it? It’s better to have a small number of goals (even having just one major goal is fine) that are non-negotiable, than to have 5 that you think may or may not happen.
As we are a month and a half into the new year, it’s a good time to begin thinking about what you want to accomplish financially in the next 11 months. I have some tips today that will help you crush your financial goals in 2017, but before we get to those, it’s important to reflect on the financial goals of last year. How did you do?
If you didn’t accomplish everything you set out to, here are a few pointers you may want to consider before you step into crushing your goals this year…
1. Whatever happened last year, is history. And thus, you cannot change it. Therefore, there is no need to mourn over it. We can only learn from our past, look into the future and act upon what we need to in the present. So, if you didn’t do enough last year financially, be like the Beatles and “let it be“. Look forward into the new year.
2. Time to be serious. I like what Bruce Lee had to say, “If you truly love life, don’t waste your time because time is what life is made of.” Decide that starting right now, you’re going to get serious about money, that you’re going to take achieving financial freedom personally. Use your time wisely this year and invest it into your dreams and your goals.
3. Commit to what you have set to accomplish. Don’t just write down your goals for the sake of setting them. It’s best to do something to make them come true. To do that, you have to tie your goals to a big ‘why” in your life. Do you know that the greatest feeling is the feeling of fulfillment, when you’ve accomplished something major in your life? What is it, that deep in your heart, in your soul, that you want to accomplish financially this year and most importantly…why?
Hopefully by reflecting on these ideas, you’ll be ready to set challenging financial goals for yourself in 2017. And with that in mind, here are 8 tips for crushing your financial goals in 2018:
1. Focus on just one major goal and give your full attention to it. Often times, people fail to achieve what they desire because they have too many targets. If you can only choose one financial goal, what would it be? Yes, other goals are important. However, for most people their financial goal matters most because if they can achieve their financial goal, they can achieve many other goals. So ask yourself right now, what is the most important goal that if you accomplished it, would change your life drastically? Focus on just this one goal and take massive action upon it.
2. Create a scoreboard to track your results. How can you tell if you have reached your goal? By constantly tracking your results. Have you ever wondered why the sports industry uses such big scoreboards? It’s so that everybody, the players, the coaches, the audience, and the commentators know where things stand. If you want to add $100,000 to your net worth this year, measure your net worth today and setup a spreadsheet to track your net worth growth each month, so that you’ll stay on track. “Measure what is measurable and make measurable what is not so.” –Galileo
3. Learn to enjoy the process. Many people tell me that spending is their number one obstacle to building wealth, so they ask what should they do? Ignore it and let it become their obstacle forever? Of course not! That’s why breaking a goal down into actionable steps that you have direct control over makes it a lot easier to focus your efforts. This is where “process goals” come into play. Process goals are the stepping stones that will lead you to your goal. If you consistently work on them day-by-day, you’ll successfully reach your larger goal. Example of a process goal: Every Monday between 8:00pm and 10:00pm, you will research ways to make more money, find out how to lower your expenses, and research at least two different investment opportunities. You see, that’s a process, not just a wish or desire. “We enjoy the process far more than the proceeds.” – Warren Buffett
4. Spend the majority of your time doing. Average people spend their time and energy coming up with, rehashing, and discussing ideas. Not you! Spend your time this year on implementation of ideas because you know that ideas are the seeds of results, but in and of themselves are just ideas. Idealism without action is the domain of the naive. Put another way, a brilliant idea un-executed is worthless. Results come from action – and you are someone who takes action.
5. Read at least 1 book to improve yourself each month. This is not directly related with goal setting, but to become better with money requires a person to improve themselves each day, each week and each month. And reading is one of the easiest and fastest ways to accomplish that. So commit yourself to read at least 1 book for improvement each month. You will eventually achieve your goals due to all your accumulated knowledge.
6. Don’t stall or make excuses. The moment you start to drift off course and make excuses, the harder your goal becomes. Those that have achieved success don’t slow down to question themselves and they don’t make excuses. They believe they can accomplish the goal and they never disturb their momentum. The clones of the world throw in the towel when they run into obstacles. You are not a clone.
7. Learn to tolerate temporary setbacks. While the masses tend to sit back and stew over their plan because there is a chance they could fail and look stupid, forge ahead. You know that while failure certainly sucks temporarily, it’s not fatal – and each time you do it, you get a little smarter. You understand that the small risk of temporarily looking stupid is outweighed by the possibility of real, permanent success.
8. Find out for yourself. The mediocre crowd has a tendency to believe conventional assumptions about: themselves, how to become wealthy, and their potential. Take the time to find out for yourself. Do the research and don’t be afraid to leave the herd. Don’t listen to naysayers. Do the legwork and once you have a plan, go, go, go.
That’s it! Hopefully these tips will help you crush your financial goals in 2017!
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Ready for more tips on how to achieve the free life? Check-out more articles from the blog