Remember those financial goals you set just 6 months ago? If you forgot, this is your gentle reminder!
This halfway point in the year is a good time to check-in on where you’re excelling and where you can improve. As July heats up and the summer days usher us to tiki bars, extra dinners with friends, concerts, and road trips it’s easy to lose sight of our finances and engage in additional spending.
Here are 5 ways to ensure you still meet your goals while enjoying all summer has to offer!
- Have an accountability partner. Is there a friend in your circle who is also looking to decrease debt, build savings, or increase their credit score? Team up and hold each other accountable. Studies show that having an accountability partner increases your chances of success by an incredible 95%! Especially during the summer when activities are endless and everyone wants to go out more frequently, you can find yourself in a bit of a money drain. It’s beneficial to have a supportive friend who’s willing to decline invitations with you to opt for more affordable activities.
For example, say your friends suggest going out to a new high-end restaurant in town after a day at the beach. Your goal is to save an additional $300 a month to put towards your debt. You don’t have the budget to go to that restaurant and still meet your goal. Having a friend who’s in the same boat will make it easier to express your desire and decline in order to find an affordable alternative together. It’s much harder to decline the temptation of invites when you’re navigating your goals solo, not to mention a lot less fun!
- Reward yourself. Being too strict in the pursuit of your goals will cause burnout and resistance. Perhaps that’s where you have currently found yourself. January and February you were going strong, but as the adrenaline rush of New Year’s faded so did your inspiration to continue. In fact, The New York Post reported that according to a recent study the average American abandons their New Year’s goals by February 1st, with 68% reporting they quit even sooner than that. So how do you beat the odds?
Just like any “get fit quick” diet fad, if you deprive yourself of joy you’ll be unable to sustain your goals long-term. Many people make the mistake of going for the sprint rather than the mile. Take a look at your strategy. Did you prioritize joy? Did you set reasonable mini-goals to achieve your big goals? If not, reassess so that you have rewards to look forward to when you hit your mini-goals. Creating small benchmarks of success will keep you motivated.
- Calendar Monthly Check-ins. To keep yourself on target with the above, calendar a monthly check-in like you would a work meeting. Mapping out these dates ahead of time will hold you accountable and keep you in the know. It’s much easier to notice areas of concern and adjust your sails each month than it is to blindly let things accrue over the course of a year and have to perform significant damage control. If you’re looking for additional accountability from a professional mentor, be sure to book an appointment here.
- Download a Budgeting App. One of the biggest financial blunders to get into is not being aware of where your money is coming and going. If you’ve become accustomed to swiping your credit card, not knowing if it will decline or not, it’s time to download an app that will help you keep track. The beauty of apps is they are easily accessible. Inserting your budget goals, bills, income, etc. will help to see it all clearly which will also empower your financial decisions and avoid unnecessary money leaks (yes, we see you Target!).
- Remember Your “Why”. This step may be the most important of them all. As we get further and further away from the New Year, we can begin to forget WHY we even started. Refreshing our minds on why this financial goal is important will respark the motivation to achieve it. Take a minute to envision what it will feel like to accomplish your goal. Being able to feel it will powerfully propel you forward.
These 5 tips will guide you in fine-tuning your goals where needed and find renewed success this summer. I’m excited to watch your progress unfold and will be cheering you on as you confidently take on the next half of the year!