With yet another new year upon us, the holiday period is a great opportunity to recharge, reset and if need be, turn over a new leaf.
It is also a popular time for setting some new goals, which, lets face it, we have often long given up on by the time March rolls around.
In order to have a greater chance of achieving your goals and building your dream life, it is important to set goals that align with your core personal values. In other words – what is most important to you in life? What is it that makes you smile and makes you feel fulfilled?
When you set goals that align with your personal values you are more likely to be motivated to follow through with them than when you set goals that don’t truly resonate with you.
However, all too often we go through life doing things because we feel we ‘should’ rather than pursuing what we truly want.
Perhaps you bought your home because it’s something you feel a responsible adult should do. Perhaps the type of car you drive is something you feel a person at your stage in life or career should drive. Perhaps you decided to be a stay at home parent because that’s what society says a ‘good mother’ should do. Maybe your choice of career was based more on what others felt you should do rather than what you were truly passionate about. Perhaps at the end of each day what you really want is to curl up with a glass of wine and a good book but instead you stay up cleaning the kitchen and doing the laundry, because you ‘should’.
Women in particular excel at this. We often conform to what others expect of us rather than doing what really fulfils us, in an effort to keep everyone around us happy. The price we often pay in the process is foregoing our own happiness – which means our physical, mental and emotional health suffer as a result.
So try to make 2019 the year that you give greater priority to what matters most to YOU in life and put all the other ‘should’s aside. It all starts with defining what it is that you value the most, and then finding a way to create space for it, be it in your schedule, your bank account, or both.
Question 1. What makes you happy?
Start by writing down what values are most important to you and what makes you feel most fulfilled. Do you like to be challenged? Do you crave adventure? Would you just like more time to yourself to read or pursue a particular hobby? Do you feel at your best when you are busy doing meaningful work and helping others? Is there something you have always wanted to do but circumstances got in your way? Write it all down.
Question # 2: Has the way you have been spending your time and money aligned with what truly matters to you?
Take a look around you – your home, your bank account, your calendar. Write down those things that align with your personal values, as well as those things that don’t and add them up.
Write down the total number of hours each week you spend doing things that don’t align with your personal values. Write down the total amount of money you spend each week on things you don’t truly care about. Avoid making a mental note, the true power lies in seeing these figures staring back at you in black and white.
Question # 3: What would you like to change?
Identify one personal goal you would like to pursue or something you would like to change about your current situation. Make it a SMART goal and where possible assign a dollar or time value to it and break it down into a weekly or fortnightly amount.
Question # 4 : What will you let go of?
Take a look at your list things that don’t align with your personal values and decide which items from that list to eliminate in order to make room for your new goal.
Question # 5: How will you get there?
It’s time to take action! Write down a detailed todo list of the steps you need to take in order to make your goal a reality. By breaking your goal down into actionable steps it will appear less overwhelming and make it easier for you to follow through and gain momentum.
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The information provided by Women with Cents is general in nature. It doesn’t take into account your objectives, personal financial situation or needs. Think of it as educational material in which to help you make more-informed decisions. We recommend you obtain financial, tax and credit advice specific to your situation before making any investments or financial decisions.
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