Business Information by Gladys Edmunds
|At age 15 Gladys developed a travel service that would prosper for more than 30 years. She is a national award winning entrepreneur, keynote speaker, author and columnist. Visit her at www.gladysedmunds.com|
Turning Financial Goals into Reality
These past few weeks I have focused on goal setting, and for good reason. This is the time of the year where graduations have taken place and many young people are embarking on different journeys. Some will go off to college after high school graduation and others will be venturing into the work world after college graduation. And then there are others who will take a break from formal education known as a gap year. And knowing how to set goals can be helpful on their road to success.
And I can always count on one or two of my 28 nieces and nephews to say something that gets me going on the subject of setting goals. It’s always both fun and a challenge at family gatherings when they are present. As usual the conversation leads to goal setting, intention, resolutions and things of that nature.
My niece said that she has spent the last five years setting a goal to lose 30 pounds and so far she hadn’t lost an ounce. She said that she lost six pounds last year when she was sick with the flu and couldn’t eat. But those six pounds returned and brought a few more pounds along with it.
A nephew backed her up with his tale of his goal to save $5000 last year and every time he had a few extra dollars some pressing situation would come up that needed the money and depleted his efforts.
Another said that there is a magic trick to reaching intentions and desires.
Of course there are no magic tricks and how you approach your goals should fit both your personality and your lifestyle.
Some people, like my niece, lets everyone know what her dreams, desires and goals are and according to her she has not met her important goal of losing weight. She says her announcement to family and friends is to get them on board to help her succeed. But so far that hasn’t worked.
On the other hand I keep all of my plans to myself until I have reached my desired goal. So in other words when I let the world know what my goals were, they are complete. Promises made to myself are important for me to keep.
Goals are met when they are approached reasonably. One idea that can help is setting reachable goals. You might end up with a body like a Victoria Secret model, living in a forty million dollar home in the Hamptons and owning a Gulfstream jet. But, it’s not a good idea to start there. And saving $5000 and losing 30 pounds in a year could seem equally as daunting.
Break down your goals into reachable nuggets. This set of more manageable goals allows you to experience small successes along the way and gives you a sense of accomplishment that can keep you motivated and enthusiastic.
Set benchmarks along the way, something that gives you an indication of how you are doing. For example, if the goal is to run a marathon, you will need to condition your body during training so that you can run longer distances. Meanwhile, you would be preforming the various exercises that would give you the strength and stamina to reach benchmarks of three-mile runs, then five-mile runs, etc.
If losing weight is your aim and you are having trouble, try losing at 3-5 pound increments. And perhaps include some health system that would help. For example, a friend wanted to lose 30 pounds and signed up for a 6-week weight loss boot camp at her gym. She went into the camp sessions with a small goal of losing five pounds toward her 30. She ended up losing eight pounds in the six weeks without making any other life changes.
Saving money can be approached in many ways. But one way is to put your savings away as if it’s a bill that’s due. I suggested to my nephew that he write a check to his savings account for a set amount that he wouldn’t miss with each paycheck. And if he’s late pay the account a late fee no different than he would pay a late bill. Or he can have his bank take a set amount each month from his checking account. This is a sure way of saving money.
Sometimes when your goals or dreams don’t come together as we had hoped, it could be a sign to stop and rethink both the goal and the method that you’re using.
In the meantime congratulations to all you graduates as you embark on a new journey. And may all your goals and desires be reached.
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