It was challenging to try and reach financial goals for last year mainly due to the health crisis.
The pandemic was a challenging test for a lot of people. Many people got sick which overwhelmed the healthcare industry. This forced the hand of many states to ask people to stay at home in order to lower the transmission rate of the virus. Once this happened, it changed the dynamics for a lot of businesses. This led to several businesses scaling down operations and some, as much as closing down shop.
This made it a lot more difficult for people to manage their finances and realize financial goals they have set early on. You could be saving up for a downpayment on a house but the health crisis happened. You suddenly find yourself dipping into that amount to help you cover and pay for your groceries at home. This will put your dream of buying a house on hold.
This is one of the reasons why you might find it difficult to reach financial goals for the year. All the challenges that the pandemic brought with it is making it difficult to forge your path ahead. But this should not stop you from trying and staying on top of your finances. If you don’t work towards your goals, they will continue to be pushed back further making it more difficult to realize them.
Situations are tough but you need to push on. Pew Research even shares that one in four adults is having a hard time paying their bills due to the health crisis. No one will put in the effort to help you get to your goals. You need to do that yourself. The good thing is that there are a few tips you can look into to help you reach your goals. If you are serious about your goals, here are a few tips to help get closer to them this year despite the pandemic.
Focus on one thing at a time to reach financial goals more effectively
There are some people who are able to multitask but you remember that it takes a lot of practice. It is a skill you develop and not everyone is able to do it. Do not feel bad when you cannot accomplish more than one task at a time. The important thing is to keep your focus on what you need to accomplish and put your efforts into making it happen.
If you try to do several things all at the same time, there is a good chance that you might not finish one of them. It is possible that you get all of them done but the quality of work you put into them might be far from acceptable. This is not good especially if you are trying to juggle several payments all at once. Chances are, you might miss one payment which could lead to heavy fines and penalties.
If you cannot manage all your payments, one repayment program to consider is debt consolidation. This is where you combine most of your payments and roll them under one account. You end up focusing on one payment amount and one due date to send in the payment every month. This lowers the chances of overlooking a payment.
Visualize your goals
This is a great exercise to help encourage you to reach your goals. The idea is to write down what you want to achieve this year and put them in strategic areas where you can see them frequently. You could be trying to set aside an amount to make a downpayment on a house you want for your family. Get a piece of paper and write that down. You then put that in your nightstand, fridge, or even inside your car. You can also put it in your gadgets which you always bring with you. It also helps to know that you need to save no less than 20% for down payment or you pay private mortgage insurance according to ABC7
The constant reminder can be enough to push you to make it happen. It can also be a great way to help prevent you from spending on unnecessary items. Just when you are itching to buy something you might not need the next day, take a look at your goals. They can make you pause and think about what you are about to buy so you realize how insignificant it can be compared to your goals.
Reach financial goals with an accountability partner
It helps to have an accountability partner to help you stay on track. If you are in a relationship, your partner is usually your accountability partner. You need to share everything with your partner and be open with your finances. In fact, your financial goals should align with each other especially with your long term goals in life.
If you are single, you can have friends or relatives you trust to be your accountability partner. The reason behind this is it will help you stay on your course. When you keep your financial goals all to yourself, you can simply keep on extending your timeline when you don’t feel like putting in the work. No one is going to know.
But with an accountability partner, this can push you to reach your goals. Someone knows about your plans. They can check on you from time to time and this can push you to move and work on your goals. It is tough to work on your goals especially with the health crisis but you need to stay on course. Just as life gives you reasons to quit, you need to find reasons to move forward.
Do not underestimate the value of a vision board
It is quite tough to reach financial goals this year because of the pandemic but one thing that can help is a vision board. This is a visual reminder of your goals making it easier for you to remember and focus. People are also visual in nature and we process information faster when looking at an image rather than a text.
This is not to say that you should not list down your goals. That is still an important part of helping you stick to your journey. But it will be an excellent idea to add a visual component to it. If you are saving for a house, you can print a picture of your dream home and put it on the fridge. It can help remind you of your goals every single day.
Focus on the actions towards your goal
To reach financial goals, you have to develop the habits around them. This takes time as well as consistency. This is why it is important you put a premium on your daily actions as much as the goal itself. Take for example a goal to be a healthier version of yourself. That is very timely considering that the country is going through a health crisis.
If your goal is to lose weight or build muscle, you need to plan out your workout and nutrition. Consistency in your diet and your exercise will get you to where you want to be. Now, it is good to be motivated by your goals. But it is equally important that you focus on how you get there. Eat right and exercise.
The same goes for your financial goals. Keep your eye on what you want to achieve. But at the same time, be consistent on how you get there. It can be minimizing expenses, looking for a side hustle, or even putting your money in investments.
It will be challenging to reach financial goals if you are constantly bombarded with money problems but it is not an impossible task. You need to keep your goals in mind and stay on course.