Financial Management Exercise
Think about something you want related to the financial area of your life. Brainstorm and write down everything that comes to mind. When coming up with
goals, don’t just think it, ink it. If you’re having trouble, use the words “What if” before each sentence. Maybe it’s an impossible goal. There’s no
judging here. Just write it down. “What would it look like if…”
Review the list and pick the top three things that are most important to you. Now take one and think of what it would feel like if you had achieved this
six months from today. Don’t worry if this goal will take much longer than six months. For the sake of this exercise, just imagine it takes six months. Now
that you have achieved this goal, what sort of feelings do you have?
Here are the top three categories people will look to achieve with their money. Yours might be different from these three but feel free to help use these
to get ideas and goals flowing.
If you said something like security. Write down what feeling will that will provide? Is it comfort, peace of mind, safety? Are they tangible goals
something like pay the mortgage without worry, or have six months of expenses in an emergency fund?
If what you wrote down something related to personal enjoyment, vacations, schools for kids, your wedding, indulgences, generosity, or a new car, the
feeling you may be looking for is independence. It’s your goal to enjoy these things without worrying about “can afford this” or without worrying
about going into to debt.
If your goal is to no longer need to work to pay the bills because you’ve built savings and investments that will create a passive income for you, then the
feeling you may be searching for is financial freedom. This is really the ultimate achievement related to finances and is also the hardest to
accomplish. But it is possible.
Maybe you wrote down a combination of these things and that’s fine too. The important thing is that you began to identify what’s most important to you.
That’s Step 1 in designing your plan.
I have included four questions below to help put an extra driving force behind your goals. I wrote in my example I had in creating my own Automatic
What do you want?
Specific, measurable result
Why do you want this?What feeling will you have if you achieve? How will you feel one year from now if you haven’t achieved it? Be hard on yourself.
An Automatic Financial Plan ten days from today.I want to control my money. I want a plan I understand that takes minimal amount of time to create and
maintain.Security, confidence, clarity. Deeper into debt with no money. Insecure. Uncertain about my future1
How to Spend Money on What You Love While Saving More Than Ever Before
It’s easier than you think to spend money on the things you love. It just takes a plan. Most financial advisors or gurus tell you not to spend, that you
need to pinch pennies in order to be successful, or you can’t afford that. My wife and I tried that lifestyle for about a month before we couldn’t do it
anymore. Kudos to the people that do it. That’s great. But it sucked for us. I figured out a way to say, “what do you want to buy, now let’s do it the
smart way.” It starts with deciding what’s really important and what’s secondary.
One mistake that many people make is deciding that they will get serious about saving money and in order to do this they make drastic cuts to their
expenses and pick ten areas they will go cold turkey on. They usually end up getting fed up and giving up completely. It’s much harder to go cold turkey on
ten things vs. picking one to two areas and slowly decrease the amount spent in that area by a little each month. It’s less drastic and more sustainable.
Think about the areas of life you think you might be able to cut back on. Common areas I hear often are morning coffees, unplanned shopping, and going out
to eat. Whatever they are pick two and focus your energy there. If you usually have five morning coffees each week on the way to work, make yourself a bet
that you will only have four morning coffees that week. Make your own at home on the other day. See what affect that has on your week.