Keeping your financial goals on track
Summer is coming to an end, which means we are more than halfway through the year. What about those resolutions you made for 2018? If youíre like most people, they probably went out the window during summer vacations. Weíve all been there!
With the holidays fast approaching, now is the perfect time to hit reset on your financial goals. Before you know it, youíll be busy booking holiday travel plans, buying gifts for loved ones and enjoying other festivities.
No matter how youíre doing, you have plenty of time to get back on track. Here are a few ways to reach your financial goals before 2018 comes to an end:
1. Make some adjustments
Maybe your New Yearís resolutions werenít realistic, or you had something pop up that drained your emergency fund and slowed you down. Life happens, and itís okay to adjust your goals. Look at where you are financially today and decide where you want to be by the end of the year. Donít be afraid to set new goals for yourself, too. You can start making progress towards your future today. Just make sure you factor in the amount of time left in the year as you reset your goals to ensure theyíre attainable.
2. Get back to budgeting
A budget is the most important thing when it comes to winning with money. If you donít tell your money where to go, youíll wonder where it went! Assess how youíve spent your money over the past few months. Look for areas where you can cut back (dining out, groceries, new clothes), and put that money towards your goals. Trust me, youíll feel less stressed.
3. Plan ahead
Itís September, which means weíll be decking the halls before you know it. At this point, you can count how many paycheques you have left until the holidays. The last thing you want to do is spend money you donít have. In 2017, roughly 74 per cent of Americans said they failed to budget properly for the holidays and racked up an average of $1,054 in debt. Plan ahead by adding a line item to your budget for holiday spending. Aside from gifts, donít forget to factor in travel expenses, charitable giving, and parties. Start setting this money aside now so you can enjoy the holiday season guilt-free.
4. Stay motivated by tracking your progress
Youíve got your budget, so now you just have to make sure that you stick to it and stay motivated. Tracking your progress can be one of the most helpful ways to do this. When you can visualise your progress, youíll be excited by those quick wins, youíll be less tempted to spend what you donít have, and youíll be motivated to keep going. Iíve created a free goal tracker that you can download at www.rachelcruze.com to make this part easy and fun!
5. Focus on what matters
Sometimes we want things so badly they start to feel more like needs. Do you really need the newest iPhone? Do you really need to replace your outdated computer? These things are nice to have, but theyíre not must-haves. With social media today, keeping up with the Joneses is harder than ever. And who would want to anyway? Donít compare your life to someone elseís highlight reel. Focus on your goals and the things that really matter in life.
You donít have to wait for a new year to set new goals, or make progress towards the goals youíve already set. In order to win with your money later, you must be intentional today!
ē Rachel Cruze is a #1 New York Times best-selling author and host of The Rachel Cruze Show. She helps people learn the proper ways to handle money and stay out of debt. Sheís authored three best-selling books, including Love Your Life, Not Theirs and Smart Money Smart Kids, which she co-wrote with her father, Dave Ramsey. You can follow Cruze on Twitter and Instagram at @RachelCruze and online at rachelcruze.com, youtube.com/rachelcruze or facebook.com/rachelramseycruze
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