“I want to get financially healthy.”
“I want to give generously, save wisely, and live appropriately.”
You may have found yourself making similar statements. But as time went by, you found yourself no closer to financial health, no closer to giving generously, saving wisely, and living appropriately.
Without goals, good intentions quickly dissipate. As you embark on your journey to financial health, goals are a must. This is why we provide the 8 Money Milestones in The Money Challenge. You need goals. Here’s why:
- Financial goals identify the destination. Imagine that it is time for your family vacation. The luggage is crammed in the car. The kids are buckled in their seats. You start the car, and your spouse asks a simple question: “Where are we going?” You better know the answer. An undetermined destination will only create stress and frustration for everyone. You can desire to have a great vacation. But without a destination, “great” will not be how you describe the time. Without financial goals, good desires can result in stress and frustration. Identify the destination. Identify your financial goals.
- Financial goals require a plan. You would never embark on a family vacation without knowing the destination. And you would never get on the road without how knowing how to get to that destination. You have a plan. The same is true for your financial goals. Identifying which financial goal to chase is important. But equally important is figuring out how to get there. Goals force you to plan. Some call this budgeting.
- Financial goals help you say “no.” The word “no” becomes one of the most important words in your vocabulary as you chase a financial goal. More than likely, it was the word “yes” that created your financial mess. Goals provide a clear reason to say “no.” Do you want to go out to eat? Do you want to buy those jeans? Do you want to get that car loan? No, you don’t. You have a goal. And saying “yes” will only delay your ability to realize that goal.
- Financial goals allow you to see success. Are we there yet? On a road trip, this question will drive you crazy. But if you are driving, you do need to know the answer to “Are we there yet?” Goals allow you to know your proximity to the desired destination. They allow you to look in the rear-view mirror and see how far you’ve come. And they let you know when you’ve arrived. Goals allow you to see success.
- Financial goals unite. CEOs rally their employees around goals. They know that goals can unite. If you are married, it’s important to agree upon your financial goals. A financially divided marriage will eventually erode your financial health. It is nearly impossible to move forward in your finances if husband and wife are moving in two different directions. More importantly, financial division can erode your marriage. Agree that you need to agree. Determine where you both want to go. And chase it together.
Identify your financial goals. Consider using the 8 Money Milestones in The Money Challenge. Turn your good desires into achievable goals.