Resetting Your Financial Goals This Summer

It’s summertime, which can mean many different things to you depending on a variety of circumstances.  For those who have children, summer means camps and family activities. For those without, it can mean day parties and cruises.  And for just about all of us, it means less traffic on our morning drives. What also comes with the summer months, are expenses and the possibility of blowing our financial goals halfway through the year.  A Mid-Year Review of your annual goals and how close (or far) you are to reaching them is crucial to your success.

Here are a few tips to help you reset your financial goals for the year:

TIP 1: Review Your Goals

This step is important when resetting your financial goals.  You first have to review what you’d originally hoped to accomplish when you first set your goals for the year.  Were you saving up for something special? Were you working to reduce or eliminate specific debts? In this step, you should be checking to see if your goals are still relevant, and if you have accomplished any of them. Maybe you made that special purchase already and so it is no longer necessary to be strict in some areas of your spending plan, or maybe you have only reached a quarter of your savings goal and you need to make adjustments to get there sooner. Whatever you find during your review will help you determine the best way to reset your goals and (hopefully) accomplish them by the end of the year.  After all, you’re halfway through, it’s definitely not too late to turn it around if you find you haven’t been doing so hot.

TIP 2: Reflect Honestly

As important as it is to review the goals that you set at the start of the year, it is equally important that you are honest in your assessment.  Afterall, you only serve to limit your own success if you are not totally truthful about how your spending habits have impacted your ability to accomplish your financial goals. It can be easy to review your goals when you have been doing the things necessary to accomplish them.  It can be another story when you have not. You may find yourself rationalizing overspending, or frivolous purchases as opposed to honestly reflecting that those purchases may have been mistakes. The good thing is it is all going to be OK. Again, you’re halfway through the year with an entire half to go! But you have to keep it real with yourself!

TIP 3: Purge

When resetting your financial goals, you will be reviewing your goals, having tough conversations with yourself, and you will also need to remove anything that contributes to your lack of accomplishment. While this purge will certainly need to include bad habits, it could also include people and activities that cause you to push your goals aside.  This includes friends who are financially irresponsible, or even friends who simply do not share the same financial aspirations as yourself. For any number of reasons, sometimes our social and even family circles can hinder our goals. It could be that we’re doing our best to “keep up with the Joneses,” or that we’re constantly lending money to folks whose ability to pay us back is sketchy at best.

TIP 4: Enjoy Responsibly

As is always our advice when creating a spending plan of any kind, it is important that you build in flexibility so that your goals do not become daunting or unenjoyable. The more rigid your goals, the less likely you are to stick to them. So while we want you to review your goals, be honest, and purge, we also want you to understand that goal setting can be fun and that the feeling of accomplishing your goals can far outweigh small sacrifices along the way. In this step, you can do things like set “stretch goals,” which is a goal that’s a little higher than what you really need.  This will build in room for you to fall a little short, but still reach your goal. You can also set a budget for little luxuries like lattes from your favorite coffee shop and once you reach that budget, you start making coffee at the office or at home. The trick is to reduce where you can and eliminate those things that truly serve no purpose.

Taking the time to reset yourself this summer can be a fun, self-reflective exercise.  You may also want to get an accountability partner during this process–someone who won’t judge you, but will encourage you. Ultimately, your financial goals are a list of promises you’ve made to yourself so that you can live a your desired lifestyle.  And who wants to break promises they’ve made to themselves? No one. Whether you’re saving up for something special, working to pay off a debt, or building up your rainy day fund, you will surely benefit from following these steps as you reset your goals.

 

Written by Desnoyers CPA

Desnoyers CPA

Known for her friendly, outgoing nature and her rare talent for financial foresight, Lydia Desnoyers has been serving individuals and small businesses in Florida since 2010. After earning her Master’s Degree in Accounting from Nova Southeastern University and her Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from Florida State University, she became a Certified Public Accountant and a Certified Fraud Examiner.

Share this on...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Email this to someone