Financial goals are notoriously hard to stick to. No matter how much or how little money you have, if you don’t consider yourself a budgeter, then you’re going to struggle to hit those financial touchstones like buying a car or owning a house. The key to achieving financial freedom is dependent on income, future earning potential, hard work and a stroke of luck. However, making goals you can actually stick to is a vital piece of the puzzle.
Here are some tips to help you get on track.
Find Your Motivation
It’s important to have a specific motive in mind when making a financial goal –otherwise, you’re not likely to stick to it. Your goal might be to start a small business in the next couple of years, save for a down payment on a house or treat yourself to a new item of clothing. It truly doesn’t matter how big or small your motivation, just keep it in mind when you’re making financial decisions. It might mean carrying around a picture of your dream house or that new suit you’ve been coveting, so it will serve as a visual reminder each time temptation strikes.
Don’t Become Overwhelmed
With so many commercials telling us what to buy, it’s easy to become derailed from our financial goals and get overwhelmed by everything we want. However, if you’ve decided to save for a specific purpose, you need to forget your other goals for the time being. Say you’re saving to buy a car, but you decide after a few months that your money would be better spent on a new wardrobe. That’s your choice, of course, but if you keep up this habit, you will never buy that car you want. Try to stick to one goal at a time, and if you’re setting micro-goals, tick them off as you go.
Temper Your Social Media Feed
Social media can be a hive of spending temptation with its numerous pop-up ads and product endorsements, but that doesn’t mean you need to cut out Twitter and Facebook altogether. When temptation strikes, you’ll need to look to the wisdom of others to keep you on track. Follow inspirational finance leaders on Twitter such as Fahad Al-Rajaan– the chairman of Kuwait Real Estate Investment Consortium – and unfollow any accounts that are spending triggers.
If you’re serious about meeting your goals, you may need to make some monthly cutbacks. If you know you have a habit of buying too many takeout coffees or ordering pizza three times a week, then you’ll know where to start in terms of reigning in your spending.
If you don’t know where your money goes, try tracking your spending for a month to see where you can cut back. Consider contacting your energy and water suppliers to see if you can move to a cheaper plan,cutting back on entertainment services like Netflix and Amazon, and start walking to work instead of driving. These might seem like small changes, but they will add up over time and make your goals feel that little bit closer to reality.