There’s nothing like the summer heat to get you dreaming about that beach house and yet without setting goals, dreaming is as close as you will ever get. 

Unless you are among the very lucky few who inherit substantial wealth, checking off bucket list aspirations (such as owning that beach house, that classic car, or embarking on life-changing travels) requires careful planning.

Millions of people across the US work hard and yet never taste the fruit of their labor. After all, banking hours mean little if cash coming in isn’t balanced by cash going out. Without smart goals backed by a rigorous financial plan, you can make all the money in the world and still come up short of your aspirations. Here’s how you change that.

Setting Goals and Getting Ahead

1. Put It in Writing
Committing your dreams to paper is the first step to making them real. Writing down your goals acts as an accountability mechanism that motivates you to get real about material progress.

In today’s age, notebooks have given way to smartphones and so if you’re not the kind to write by hand, go ahead and type your goals out on your phone’s notes app or laptop. Just be sure, whichever medium you choose, to store your list in a visible place that will provide a regular reminder.

2. Smart Goals are Specific 
Numerous examples of short-term goals pepper financial literature and yet only those that are personal and specific are of any value. “Get better at saving,” for instance, is not the kind of goal that’s going to get you relaxing on your own private beach house porch. “Eliminate high-interest debt,” on the other hand, is.

The more specific your goals, the more attainable they will seem. This breeds motivation which, in turn, breeds success.

3. Set a Timeline  
If you’ve ever been a student, you know that there’s nothing like a deadline to boost productivity.

Setting goals is great but only to the point that they are accomplished. Break your goals down, get specific, and then set a timeline by which certain steps need to be accomplished. Incremental progress not only feels good but it generates momentum and this, in itself, helps you eventually reach those big-ticket items.

4. Crunch the Numbers
So far, we’ve said that smart goals are specific, personal, and subject to deadlines and while this is all true, none of it is attainable without a little math. You can’t aim to wipe out your credit card debt or save enough for a down payment by a specific date if you don’t first build a budget.

Budgeting can be intimidating and yet in its simplest form, it is nothing more than tracking income vs. spending. Once you know how much you have after meeting your basic needs, you can determine how much you can dedicate to your financial goals. This, in turn, allows you to determine whether your timeline is realistic which is key information should you wish to stay on track.

Planning makes progress more efficient and is the key to saving. This is especially true when families are faced with the disability or death of loved ones. When crisis strikes, families who have a plan in place don’t waste time, energy, and money figuring out what to do. They don’t waste time on unnecessary legal fees and court costs. An experienced estate planning attorney can help you turn your goals for your family’s financial security and harmony into a plan upon which your family can rely upon when crisis strikes.

To learn more about setting goals and turning them into reality, do not hesitate to schedule a free consultation with Jim Miskell at the Estate Planning Law Group of Georgia either by calling 770-822-2723 or using the contact form on our website.


Contact the Estate Planning Law Group of Georgia 

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