by, Stasie Tillman
“I am a millionaire.”
“I am a millionaire.”
“I am a Millionaire.”
Now that I’ve declared it, how do I get there? The simple answer is to create a plan. But for most people, the idea of becoming a millionaire is something far out of reach. We need to start with smaller (more attainable) dollar amounts. For example, if you’ve never saved more than $500 in your savings then aim at securing and maintaining $1,000 for the next year.
Or maybe you have not started investing yet, now is the time to start. Do the research for companies you want to invest in, reviewing past performance and company prospectuses. But before you can do that start with a personal trading platform that you trust and feel comfortable using. The Best Stock Trading Platforms For New Investors gives you a list of online platforms that have great customer service and provide ease of use allowing a new investor to get started without much difficulty.
First, a destination is needed. We’ve set it on being a millionaire. There are many steps to get there. Let’s review strategies used by successful business owners and wealthy investors to see the different ways they used to attain their fortunes. Also, we need to have a deadline. They say a goal without a plan is just a wish. We are done wishing. Now is the time for making money moves! A nod to Cardi B.! 😜
Goal-setting Takes Vision
“Goals are the fuel in the furnace of achievement.”
Brian Tracy, Eat that Frog
The idea of goal-setting is not so abstract or out of reach as many might think. It is something we do many times a day on little tasks. Think of your to-do lists of actionable tasks you’d like to tackle at a specified time. You have to pay your rent by the 1st or make a doctor’s appointment. You write them down and check them off.
**include to-do list pictures
Goal-setting is a similar action but on a larger scale. These are ideals that you would like to attain in any area of your life, whether in your finances, marriage, career, or life goals. “The definition if goal setting is the process of identifying something that you want to accomplish and establishing measurable goals and timeframes.”
What vision do you have for your finances? If you don’t have one, now is the time to envision what your ideal financial scenario would be. If it is to be financially stable, define what that looks like for you (ie., having no debt, multiple investments, and $30,000 in savings, etc.). Once the vision is clear and detailed then you can think of the ideal timeframe for achieving it.
And NO! It cannot be now because if it were now, you would not be reading this article. Let’s be realistic. Pick an end date and let’s get down to the particulars.
Evaluate Your End Date
This step of evaluation is necessary to determine if your end date is realistic for your particular goal and life situation. Let’s say your goal is to save $30,000 by the end of the year. That only leaves you nine months to achieve your goal, meaning that you would have to save $3,334 per month ($30,000 divided by 9). Now is this goal doable if you only take home $4,000 a month with living expenses of $2,500? Not unless you get an additional source of income to boost your cash flow.
Otherwise, a goal of having a third of that savings goal by the end of the year is more realistic because you’ve looked at the numbers and evaluated them against the end date. Realism is key to keep you motivated and on task to achieving your goal.
It is when we measure our performance against unrealistic goals that often causes people to become discouraged. Keep perspective. Our goals are achievable. They just take time. Be patient.
Learn More Ways To Earn
If you find yourself in a situation where you just don’t make enough money. You are struggling to maintain your living standard and cannot save or eliminate debt. Then it’s time to go after what you need…MORE MONEY!
Make sure you’ve reviewed your current situation with your day job. Ask yourself questions like am I getting paid what I am worth? If not, you may need to buck up the courage and ask for a raise or look for a new job that would pay you the wages you deserve. Or you may need to hone your skills by taking training courses. Determine where you are on the income spectrum and make the necessary changes to increase your pay.
On the other hand, the days of working multiple time-traded-for-wages jobs are over. We are in an era when our ideas are engines for income generation. By this I mean, you can get paid for your ideas, skills, talents, and abilities.
Not everyone can do what you do, so why not get paid for doing it. Offer your abilities to those in need as a freelancer on the side of your current 9 – 5. Websites like freelancer.com, fiverr.com, and upwork.com are great places to set up a profile so that those in need can find you or you can browse current jobs offered on their running open jobs board.
How to Save More Money
For others where income is not the issue, then you have to look at your expenses and money habits to determine why more money isn’t staying in your bank account. Are you a compulsive shopper? Have your expenses gone out of control? It’s time to STOP and hold yourself accountable for what happens to your money.
Make it a practice to review your expenses on a weekly basis. Are there any non-essential items (such as services you rarely use but are on autopay (Netflix, Hulu, car wash service, etc)) that can be canceled? That autopay feature is a gift and a curse. It’s nice to have one less thing to remember to pay, but it also gives debtors first dibs and access to the money in your bank account on a recurring basis. This is a no-no. You alone should have first dibs on your money! You’ve worked hard enough to earn it.
A weekly review of your income and expenses will give you a clearer picture of where your money is being squandered and how you can keep more in your account (or as cash on hand if that works better for you). There are many different savings strategies below to help you get started. Practice to always pay yourself first, and treat yourself to small victory celebrations (like a manicure or to some ice cream) for hitting small savings goals along the way.
Claim the Goal as Done
If it’s not fun, then why do it, right? Make the process fun along the way and it will push you to go for greater savings and higher goals in the future. Let’s say your goal is to save your first $1,000. For each $100 you save, celebrate your achievement with a $5 treat (get dessert, a new book, or just some ‘me-time’ doing anything you like to do).
The important part of going after your goals is to know that they are achievable, and because you can attain them you may as well believe and act like you already have it. If your goal is to travel to Paris this year, act like you’re traveling to Paris, France this year. Start making travel plans. Write down ticket prices for the exact time of year you’d like to go. Research hotels you’d consider staying in, and tours or sites you plan to visit.
When it comes to money goals the principle is the same. If you’re saving for a big ticket purchase, allowing yourself those $5 treats along the way will help you feel abundant and not like you are depriving yourself of anything.
Or if your money goal is to be wealthy (like a millionaire), then do as they do but on a smaller scale. Most wealthy people (think Warren Buffet & Bill Gates) aren’t out frivolously spending money, even though they could. They are philanthropists and wise investors. Adopt their practices of giving regularly on a scale suitable for your income, and watch as it is returned to you in various ways.
Set Reminder Checkpoints Along the Timeline
The calendar feature on my phone is a lifesaver. It’s to the point that if it’s not on my phone calendar, it’s likely not going to happen. The same goes for your new money practices and for remembering checkpoints to assess your progress toward your goal.
We’ve discussed performing weekly income/expense evaluations of your accounts. Since this is a new practice for you, it is essential to put a reminder alert on your calendar and have it repeat every week until it becomes an ingrained habit. The same goes for the overall goals. If you aim to have a thousand dollars saved by yearend, and you’ve calculated that means saving $100 per month. At the end of each month review what you’ve done to remain on task.
If at any point you’ve fallen short of the monthly goal, then you know that deficit needs to be made up during the next month.
Is Goal-setting For You?
In the end, goal-setting ultimately serves you to help you live a more fulfilled life. As with any new practice, it may take some getting used to, but once you’ve written down your goal, mapped out your plan, and taken action; Your perseverance will work for you in the long run.
My money goal for this year is to build a $5,000 emergency fund. This is easier said than done since my income is minimal right now. But it gives me a focal point on my action plan…first, get more income!
Share your money goals for this year in the comments below! Let’s do this together!
Go for your goal!!