When it comes to our finances, it’s easy to lose sight of our goals and become demotivated when unexpected events derail our plans. It’s especially difficult during times like these where there’s likely more uncertainty and concern for our financial futures than ever before. In this article, we’ll touch on four ways to stay motivated with your finances in these trying times.
1. REVISIT YOUR FINANCIAL GOALS
In order to improve any area of our life (including our finances), we need to have a strong ‘why’ associated with our goals to stay motivated. When setting financial goals, it’s important that we understand and define the reason behind the goal and how it will positively influence our life.
For example, will becoming debt free mean that we’ll have more surplus income to save and invest for our future? Does contributing more to superannuation now mean that we’ll be able to afford a more comfortable lifestyle in retirement? It’s important to focus on these reasons and remind ourselves of why we set our financial goals in the first place, if we hope to stay motivated, especially during difficult times.
2. BREAK DOWN YOUR GOALS
We often overestimate what we can achieve in one year and underestimate what we can achieve in five years. We set audacious, sometimes unrealistic goals that cause us to become demotivated when we fall short of achieving them. We feel excited and motivated when we set our financial goals, only to lose sight of them when unexpected life events occur. If you feel that the financial goals you have set for yourself no longer seem achievable, a useful strategy to consider is to break these goals down into smaller, more achievable goals.
For example, you may have set a goal to pay off $5,000 of credit card debt this year. If this goal now seems unachievable, set a new goal to pay off $2,500 this year and contact your lender to assess your options and see if you can negotiate a lower interest rate. By breaking down your goals in this way, you’ll continue to make progress towards your larger goals while accomplishing important milestones to help you stay motivated.
3. REMAIN OPTIMISTIC
When our financial plans don’t work out as we hoped they would, we can become demotivated and feel hopeless about our financial situation. It’s easy to stay positive when things are going well, but it becomes more difficult to maintain the same outlook in the face of adversity. That’s why it’s especially important to take the time to identify reasons to remain positive and optimistic during tough times.
Start by acknowledging all of the financial goals you’ve already accomplished. It’s important to reflect on what you’ve already achieved and be proud of your accomplishments. It’s also important to identify things in our life that we’re grateful for. This doesn’t have to be related to our finances, but it’s essential for our motivation to find reasons to remain optimistic. This will allow us to shift our focus away from the negative and towards the positive, providing us with a more optimistic outlook on our financial future as we strive to maintain motivation towards our goals.
4. SEEK ASSISTANCE
When our motivation is dwindling and we’re finding it difficult to remain positive about our financial situation, often the best thing we can do is to seek help. You don’t have to go through tough times alone. Financial support is available to help keep you on track during times like these. Our team of Financial Advisers at Canny Group are here to help with any questions you may have about your financial situation, Centrelink entitlements or retirement planning. You may also wish to speak to a Financial Information Service Officer at Services Australia for free confidential, financial information.
If you need any help or financial advice, please get in touch with us and we would be happy to assist you!
Chris Graham – Client Services