This is a guest post by Chavah Kinloch, a WAHM (Work at Home Mom) of four young children – She’s an artist. You can regularly find Chavah at her blog, Creating My Reality, and you can follow her regularly by subscribing to her RSS feed.
As someone that enjoys budgeting and monitoring her finances, it’s easy to forget that the thought of taking control of your financial state can be rather intimidating. At this time of year many of us are setting new goals and I bet that almost everyone has at least one goal to somehow get more money this year.
You know what? It’s a great goal to have. Don’t just set it though, act on it. Make 2010, your year to master your finances, a reality.
It’s easy to ‘set’ the goal; the hard part is the follow through. I meet a lot of people that set goals and never come anywhere near to achieving them. It actually makes me hurt for them, I feel bad that they just opened their mouths and talked a whole lot of trash to me and now have to look me in the eye. I do remember what people have said, I’m just too polite to ever bring it up again. Each and every year I hear these same people, saying the same things and I’m yet to see any different results. Why?
1 – They fail to Plan
2 – They fail to Act
3 – They lacked Belief
Now no one, I believe, wants to be looked at in the way I just described. I know that and I know that it’s terrible of me to even admit those thoughts have crossed my mind. That’s the reality though. We don’t want to be just another person saying what we think people want to hear do we?
So here’s what we do.
Set your goal. It could be to become debt free or it could be to double or even quadruple your current income. Only you know what your goal is.
Now you have to sit and think. What are we thinking about? We’re now thinking about and writing down a list of ways that we could potentially eliminate unnecessary expenses and create extra income. Sounds simple right? It is, so why isn’t everyone doing this step!
You also need to begin to record your incomings and outgoings. Go over your spending with a fine-tooth comb. Continue doing this EVERY WEEK until you’re comfortable that you know exactly where your money is going. Then use this information to create a new budget.
I won’t dive in deep with ‘how to budget’ in this post. I’ll just leave it at that. If you really want me to explain in detail what you should be budgeting for, just let me know and I’ll write a post about that.
So you’ve done the simple part of creating the list, now take your list and read it over. This is going to be your ‘how to’ guide. The ideas you’ve just written down are the secret to making your goal get reached. This is the hard part; you will probably need a bit of elbow grease and a whole lot of discipline to get through it. In order for you to reach this goal you’ve set you’re going to need to take necessary steps to reach it. A whole lot of talk will get you nowhere; it’s the action that takes it from being a goal to being your reality.
This one may sound silly, especially in a post about personal finances but it’s probably the one that will have the biggest impact on you actually being able to reach your financial goal or not. You must have belief in your plan, belief in yourself to step out of the box and try something new, belief that you can be disciplined to follow through with the good ideas you’ve had and belief that if you do all of these things not only will you reach your goal, you’ll be setting yourself up for a whole lot more freedom by finding control over your financial state, forever.
Having a clear system set in place that includes a step by step overview, showing you going from point A to point B within the year is essential. By the end of the year you’ll be able to stand tall and proudly announce that you achieved the financial goals you set out to do for 2010. So when 2011 comes, it’s only onwards and upwards from there!