I am so excited to bring you all along on the journey to more organized and successful financial journey! Today we start out simple with a review of your financial goals. We will ask the following questions:
- Where am I at financially?
- Where do I want to be financially?
- How do I get where I want to be?
These three questions will start to lay the foundation for your financial goals. Come along as we begin to transform your finances!
Before we get started, download the free worksheet so you can note your answers to the questions below. Use one copy of this worksheet for each time period. Save your worksheets to refer back to next time you reassess your finances to see how far you’ve come!
Where am I at financially?
Before you can design your roadmap to financial success, you need to take a look at where you currently are. Here are some questions to ask yourself to assess where you are currently.
- How much money do I make each month?
- How much of that money do I save pre-tax?
- How much money do I take home each month?
- How much do I spend on housing each month?
- How does my housing cost compare to my take home pay?
- How much do I spend on bills needed to survive?
- How much do I spend on expenses that are optional or recreational?
- Do I have a budget? If so, is that budget working for me?
- How does my spending look compared to my saving each month?
- Do I have an emergency fund?
- Is there enough money in my emergency fund?
- Am I investing?
- Do I own appreciating assets (ex: real estate)
Of course, this is only some of the questions you could be asking. Let us know what additional questions you asked yourself to determine where you are at financially.
Where do I want to be financially?
The first part of deciding where you want to be is setting a time. Our financial goals look very different at different parts of our lives. You can have multiple sets of financial goals at one time, all having different time tables. Financial goes can be for this week, this month, this year, 5 years, 10 years, and the list goes on. You can set a goal for any time period.
Now start with just one of your chosen time periods and ask yourself these questions:
- How much money do I want to be making
- How much money do I want to save pre-tax?
- How much money do I want take home each month?
- How much do I want to spend on housing each month?
- What will my monthly necessary expenses be?
- How much do I want to spend on expenses that are optional or recreational?
- How much do I want to spend vs save?
- How much money will be in my emergency fund?
- Is there enough money in my emergency fund?
- Do I want to be investing? In what?
- Do I want to own appreciating assets (ex: real estate)
Like above, these are not the only questions you could be asking. Let us know what additional questions you asked yourself about where you want to be. Which time period were your questions for?
How do I get where I want to be?
Once you’ve got an idea of where you are and where you want to be, you need to determine how to get to where you want to be. What steps do you need to get in place to make changes.
Start by comparing where you are and where you want to be. Are there areas where you already are where you want to be for the time period you are reviewing? If there are, you can set these areas aside and maintain what you are currently doing. Remember that these areas may need to be re-visited when working on your goals for a different time period.
For areas where you are not where you want to be, take it one area at a time. Compare where you are now to where you want to be and think of actionable ways you can move from where you are to where you want to be.
Example Scenario: You make $40,000 per year and want to make $60,000. Let's compare these questions: How much money am I making? $40,000 How much money do I want to be making? $60,000 Now determine some actionable steps to get to $60,000: Ask for a raise. Complete a training/certificate/degree. Get a new job. Start a side hustle. Use the actionable steps to make a plan more detailed plan on which actionable steps you will use and how you will do each one. Let's dig in a little deeper to a few of the steps. Ask for a raise: Does your work warrant a raise? Make a list of everything you do that shows you deserve a raise. Include why you are valuable to the company. Decide when, how, and who you are going to ask to consider giving you a raise. Determine what you will say to them. Make sure you have a clear and concise approach. Be prepared for them to say no. Get a new job: Do you want to stay in the same field you are in now? If not, which field are you interested? Research what type of companies do the work you are interested in. Look to see what positions are open in your area. Taylor your resume to the field you are applying to. Make a numerical goal for how many applications you will send out each week and start applying. Determine if you want to reach out to a recruiter. Attend every interview you are invited to. You never know when a job may be better than it looks on paper.
Do you have a success story where you got where you wanted to be? Let us know where you wanted to be and what steps you took to get there. Congratulations on your success!
Now you’ve made your plan, get out there and achieve your goals! Let us know how it goes!