How to Set Financial and Life Goals

Many of the life goals we have require money. Want to travel? You need money. Want to buy a home? You need money for a down payment. From retirement to college for the kids to a new big-screen TV, if you want to enhance your life, it makes sense to set financial and life goals that work for your situation.

The good news is that there are plenty of tools available to help you set goals and turn your dreams into realities. If you want to set financial and life goals to enrich your life, here are some things to consider:

Figure Out What You Really Value and Want

#dreamtogoalThe first step is to figure out what you really value and want in your life. Take some time to think about what would really enhance your life, and why it would enhance your life. One of the best things you can do is be honest about what you want out of life, and then discard the things that aren’t part of your values. If you truly value travel and new experiences, it doesn’t make sense to spend money on knick-knacks for the house. If you rarely watch TV, why would you pay for an expensive satellite or cable TV package?

Determine what you really want your life to look like, and what you want your money to do for you, and start from there. That’s your dream goal.

Estimate What it Would Take to Make it Happen

Next, you need to figure out what it would take to make it happen. How much money do you need to save in order to reach your goals? Having an idea of what you need to take that family vacation or pay for your child’s college is the first step to success. You need to know where you are going.

After you figure out the big picture, it’s time to break it down to see what you need to do each month, or even each week. A $5,000 goal is much easier to manage if you know that you can set aside $500 a month for 10 months, rather than try to come up with the money at once.

Use Tools to Keep Track

You should also consider using tools to plan and track your progress. One app that looks promising when it comes to setting and reaching life and financial goals is the #dreamtogoal app, Goalkeeper, from Standard Life. When this app is launched, it will help you identify small changes you can make to your life in order to reach your goals. (Sign up now, and be in the running to win $500.)

Look for other tools that can help you save the money you need to reach your financial and life goals. These tools might be automatic savings plans, the ability to use direct deposit to take money straight from your paycheck to another account, or personal finance software that allows you to plan out your spending more effectively.

The key is to be realistic and make a plan. As long as you plan based on your values and priorities, and make it a point to follow up, you should be able to live the life you want.

About the Author

Miranda writes about financial topics for several web sites. Her blog is Planting Money Seeds, and her book, Confessions of a Professional Blogger, is available on Amazon.