Have you ever set a New Year’s Goal for yourself with all the good intentions of the world only to have forgotten or abandoned it before winter is over? Unfortunately, this is a very common occurrence and something that I see often as a financial planner. Why do I see it so much in my line of work? It’s the planner part of the financial. Everyone can handle their money. Not everyone can handle their planning. That’s where I come in. My job is to help families make a plan for their financial future and navigate the financial landmines along the way.
In my opinion, the key to a solid financial plan (or any plan to hit a goal, I’d say) is follow-through
- Find a dream and make it a goal.
- Write our goals down and turn them into plans.
- Break down the goal into actionable steps.
- Take action to achieve the goal.
- Track progress towards the goal
- Goal achieved!
Easy, right? Not always. What about when your dreams are 20 years into the future like retirement or career achievements? What about when you’re stuck in step 3 and can never seem to take the action necessary to move towards your goals? Setting goals are easy. Achieving them are not. And the most common enemy I’ve encountered to hitting our goals is our own mindset.
When I meet with people that have long-term goals but are stuck in the process somewhere, I often ask them to reexamine if those goals are really worth working towards? If there is good accountability and laser like focus…why are they stuck? The answer usually lies within their own mindset. The goal may not be really what they want…it may be what their partner or society tells them to want: Kids by age 30. Manager by age 45. Retirement by age 60. But these may not be THEIR goals thus subconsciously dragging their feet to achieve them.
So how do we keep going towards our long-term goals if we get stuck? Accountability is always a great place to start. Asking for help, talking about your fears and a dash of determination. But mostly I suggest looking at the goal and being honest with yourself if it’s even what you really want. Then set another goal, this time better aligned with what you really want, and watch how quickly you move through the steps with fluidity and ease. Achieving goals should feel good, feel natural and make us happy. Remember, even with goal planning, we have to enjoy the journey not just the end goal.
Kimberly Enders CFP® CWS® CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™
Enders Wealth Management
37800 Van Dyke Ave, Suite 125
Sterling Heights MI 48312
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Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board) owns the CFP® certification mark, the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ certification mark, and the CFP® certification mark (with plaque design) logo in the United States, which it authorizes use of by individuals who successfully complete CFP Board’s initial and ongoing certification requirements.