The new year, by now, has lost a lot of its “newness” – am I right? What I find though, is it is after the newness has shaken off and we are into the swing of things, that it becomes a little easier to evaluate where you’re at, where you’ve been, and where you want to go from here. To help with that process, here are a few key things to do:
1. Celebrate: Find a few good things that worked well in 2018 and early into 2019, however small. Having some “wins” under your belt puts you in a frame of mind to build on in 2019. Perhaps you were able to increase your 401(k) contributions, or you re-financed some debt to a lower rate – whatever it is, write it down and relish the win.
2. Goals: Before looking at where you sit financially, revisit what it is you want to do and accomplish. Do you want to retire at 55, 65 or 75? Do you want to take another vacation? Or do you want to pursue more education through the Aspire program? Maybe buy a home? Pay for your child’s college? All these things will impact your plans moving forward.
3. Prioritize: Wouldn’t it would be nice to have unlimited resources to accomplish our dreams? The reality is, we only have so much time and so much money. Therefore, you must nail down what are the most important things to you. An example might be:
a. Paying $50 more per month to get out of debt finally
b. Protecting your family if something were to happen to you
c. Saving your salary increase into your 401(k)
4. Take inventory and get organized: As life goes on, our financial lives can get spread out. There might’ve been a good offer on a savings account, you might be contributing to your current 401(k), you might have an old 401(k) or other investments around. Perhaps you vested in the retirement savings plan. There might be an insurance policy or two that you haven’t reviewed in a while or family members have changed that are beneficiaries on those plans. Taking some time to gather and get organized around your financial life will give you a big boost in confidence heading into the new year. This will allow you to know if you’re potentially on track for the above goals or not.
There are many actions you can take around your situation. My hope is that you will invest your time to work towards your financial future.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.