Are you kicking goals the SMART way?

Women with CentsBlog, Budgeting

Over the past couple of weeks we have had some great discussions in the Women with Cents Facebook group about budgeting (join here, if you haven’t already) and it is great to see so many of you ready to take control of your finances!

So this week, I want to talk to you about goals.

Have you cancelled your 2016 gym membership yet?

It’s February, so we’re a month into new year’s resolutions (and new gym memberships) and I can imagine that you might currently fit into one of four categories:

  1. You’re absolutely nailing your new year’s resolutions
  2. You’re thinking about your new year’s resolutions and how you haven’t made a lot of progress, but you haven’t given up yet
  3. You’re avoiding thinking about your new year’s resolutions
  4. You’re pretending this year’s resolutions never existed

If you’re in the first category you’re better than most of us (myself included) because statistics say only 12% of Australians stick to their resolutions. So how can you set goals that you’re more likely to achieve?

Time to get S.M.A.R.T!

For the women who are working in corporate roles, SMART goals might be a concept you’re sick of hearing about. But there is a reason it’s so overused…it works.

SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound.

So this week, grab a latte and a notepad and write down the goals you have for your money. For example:

I want to pay off X per week on my credit card/loan and have it paid off by Y date.

Now here is my little spin on a SMART goal.

With each goal, also write down WHY you want to achieve each goal and how you will FEEL when you achieve it. It might sound like fluffy nonsense, but it’s important and here’s why.

I love (love, LOVE) coffee, chocolate and pasta. But unfortunately I also have a very sensitive immune system and these foods wreak havoc on my body. For a long time I focused on the pleasure of these foods and ignored the consequences.

That was until I wanted to get pregnant.

The doctors told me that my condition made pregnancy a risky game, unless I calmed my immune system. I knew I wanted to have a child, so I got very clear on my goal.

I ate better because I knew WHY I was doing it (and it wasn’t because I thought I ‘should’). And I was successful because it was tied to a result that was important to me – a healthy pregnancy and baby.

This is just one example, but we have all been there. We have all seen what we can accomplish when we set our mind to it, and the goals we don’t stick to when we lack that determination (or that clear WHY).

So take a couple of minutes this week to think about your money goals, why they’re important to you and how you’ll feel when you achieve them.

 I’d love to hear some of your goals, so share them with me and the rest of the Women with Cents community in our Facebook group here . Let’s keep each other accountable!

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