For most people, 2020 was a challenging year. From the COVID-19 pandemic to the subsequent recession to the many unprecedented political and cultural events, this pandemic has been one for the history books. While most were hoping that 2021 would be nothing like 2020, the reality is that we may never go back to our old normal. As you think ahead to 2022—and having a clean slate in the new year—financial goals may be your top priority. Here are some tips for making realistic financial goals and reaching them, so that next year can be a major “bounce back” year for you. Basic Rules for Goal Setting You may have heard of the SMART goal system, but here’s a reminder. Goals should be:
- Ask yourself if this is a relatively small or large goal. Is it short-term or long-term? For larger and long-term goals, you will need to make sub-goals, which are milestones along the way.
- Research your proposed goal. Can you find stories or data about other people who have achieved the same goal? If no one has ever accomplished it before, then it may not be realistic.
- Assess your starting point. Even if you know a goal is achievable, make sure that it is achievable from your starting point.
- Find what motivates you. Motivation is the secret sauce when it comes to goal setting and goal achievement. When you’re motivated, you can do more than when you’re not. Use motivation to set harder goals than you would otherwise, but you also need to find ways to stay motivated as you work toward your goal.
Monday December 14, 2020/