Home » Self Improvement » Goal Setting

Setting Financial Goals

Aug 18, 2007
Setting a goal and working towards it is quite a difficult task for many. This can be especially daunting for some when the goals are financial. Most of us just tend to avoid looking at our finances, and the only care we take is just paying off the bills for essential services. Still, most of us desire a better life style, dream about owning fancy cars, going on exotic vacations, buying a big house etc. But if we want to realize these dreams (and most of the times, they are attainable), then we need to work towards them. Setting a financial goal will instill a sense of discipline that will go a long way in helping us realize our dreams.

To begin with, you should first decide what it is that you would like to do; have extra money to save and invest or a great life style by the day. You might be saving for various things, ranging from buying a new car, to childrens education, retirement savings, buying a house etc. All this should be written down to help you comprehend what it is that you exactly want. Things that you right down here should be realistic and feasible, within the scope of your means, and should be based on fair assumptions on where you see yourself to be in a couple of years.

The next part would be breaking these things down so that it makes it easy for you to realize your goals. You will find here that some goals would be very easy to realize, while others would most likely take lot of time and effort to achieve. Thus, you can divide your goals as short term- that can be achieved within a year; medium term- that can be achieved in a couple of years; and long term- that will take at least five years or more to achieve. Typical example for a short-term goal would be buying a new car. If you have too much debt on you, then clearing off that would come under an intermediate term goal (though debts like mortgage usually takes much longer). Planning for your retirement or saving for the college education of your child can be termed as a long-term goal.

Other thing you should plan is investment. You should remember that money breeds money, and if you happen to just stash away all the cash in the bank, it will just lose it value over the years, even after considering the interest earned on it; this happens due to inflation. You should look at various investment avenues, even those that you have not tried before. This includes stocks, bonds, and mutual funds etc. Dont hesitate to seek out more information on these topics.

While it is true that you cannot venture into these territories without sufficient knowledge, you can always gain knowledge and learn about these things. Have an open mind, and look at various benefits, as well as risks from a neutral point of view. Smart investments can go a long way in realizing your financial goals, that too at times, much more quickly. But again this will require thorough research and adequate planning on your part.
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