We’re all familiar with making New Year’s resolutions and, for many, January is a crucial month for ensuring that key goals are set for the months ahead. One of the more popular resolutions is around personal wellbeing and fitness; making a promise to keep your personal heath in check for the year ahead. While this is a very common one, we think that the same kind of forward thinking and willpower can be applied to reviewing the wellbeing of your finances.
If getting your finances in order is going to be a key focus for you in 2016, then take a look at the key tips we’ve pulled together to help you plan, target and achieve your financial goals throughout the year. As ever, having a concrete plan in place from the outset will help you outline what the next 12 months will look like in terms of getting yourself financially fit. This approach will not only help your finances for the year, but also help you achieve your long-term goals.
1. Be honest
As with many New Year’s resolutions, to make them a success, you need to be really honest about your current situation to make sure that the goals you set are realistic and achievable. This is the best way for you to get a full understanding of how your finances currently stand; it may be that they aren’t as bad as you think or, alternatively, that you need to put new things in place to get them back on track. If the latter rings true to you, then the following steps should help you create a strategy to meet your personal financial objectives.
2. Be retrospective
By looking back retrospectively to see where you’ve been spending money, it allows you to see where, perhaps, you have been going wrong – as well as highlighting the areas that no longer require as much attention. Being able to understand your previous spending habits will help you make smarter decisions going forward. Ask yourself: do my past spending habits reflect what my financial priorities are? If the answer is no, then you know these are the areas that need to be changed going forward and this can form the basis of your financial plan.
3. Be forward thinking
Once you’ve had a chance to reflect and assess your current finances, you’ll be able to understand where the areas of development are. From this point, realistic and measurable goals can be set that will help you continuously improve your finances for the year ahead. It’s really important to be smart when setting these objectives so that you’re not taking on too much – if your objectives are too ambitious, then they’re going to be more difficult to achieve.
4. Be a planner
If you’ve followed the steps previously outlined, you should have a clear view of what your financial goals are for 2016. With these established, it will make it much easier for you to break these down into smaller, actionable steps. We believe that focusing on smaller changes that will contribute towards meeting a wider objective is the best way to achieve success.
By following this process, it will help you keep your personal finances looking healthy, whilst reducing debts and enabling you to save more regularly. Not only this, but by putting in place careful planning, you’ll be better able to remain focused on your financial goals throughout the year. Our team at Cameron Chase offers considered financial planning advice to help you better understand your current financial situation, as well as help you plan to meet your financial goals. We understand the importance of making your finances work for your lifestyle, which is why our cashflow modelling software can help you understand where you are now, and help you analyse the changes you need to make in order to get where you want to be.