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Five Ways That Establishing Life Goals & Aligning Spending Promotes Smart Financial Decision Making

Everyone knows that goals are pivotal to success. We set health goals, occupational goals, relationship goals, and personal development goals. We create long-term goals and short-term goals. In fact, annually we devote an entire holiday to setting goals for the upcoming year. Life goals don’t necessarily have to be things, events, or accomplishments. They could be as vague as prioritizing my family or giving back to my community.

Goals are important. They give us purpose. They allow us to target our behaviors to accomplish important things. But, establishing life goals not only helps you identify the things you want in this world, it can also help create a very intentional and sound individualized financial platform.

You Target Your Spending

When you know what your life goals are, you should try to structure your spending around these goals. Intentional spending towards your objectives helps ensure that not only is your spending aligned with things that truly bring you joy and happiness, but it also eliminates spending on ‘noise’, or things that you don’t really care about but find yourself spending money on anyways.

You’re Reminded of What’s Truly Important

Americans spend indiscriminately on a lot of things we don’t even really care about. We are creatures of habit and advertisements have sold us the idea that we’re owed certain innocuous royalties like that venti vanilla bean, pumpkin spice, iced latte – and yes…yes I want sprinkles. Of course I want sprinkles. It’s Wednesday and it’s been a long week, can’t a woman just enjoy some sprinkles?

But the realty is, you don’t need these commodities that we are sold as mid-week miniature luxuries. The only thing you need, is to achieve the things you want to achieve.

You Accelerate The Process

Consider whether some of your life goals could be achieved more quickly by scaling back on indiscriminate purchases. For fun, estimate how much you spend every month on things that don’t align with your life goals. Then do the math and see how much you may have in 10, 20, and 30 years if you started investing that money overtime. You’d probably be shocked at how minor but consistent investments can grow substantially overtime.

You Improve Your Relationship With Money

Having a ‘relationship’ with money is a weird concept, I get it. But, money has direct ties to a variety of emotions both positive and negative. When you align your spending towards your life goals, you find the purchases you make that get you closer to your goal, extremely rewarding. You feel good about the purchase you’ve made because you know you’re closer to the things that bring you happiness, and you also know you’ve given up spending on quite a bit of ‘noise’ to better target that dollar.

You Free Up Time To Focus On Your Goals

There is clearly a relationship that exists between intentional spending and goal accomplishment, but by making the decision to focus your spending on your goals, you’re also going to free up a significant amount of time. It’s estimated that the average American spends 1.7 hours of every day shopping. That’s about 26 days a year. If you made the decision to stop spending on things that either you don’t need, or don’t align with your goals, you would get back an additional month of every year to focus on your target areas.

We will leave you with this - Every single purchase you make gets you closer, or further from, the things you truly want. Know what you want, and go after it.

- Sarah & Dawn (BTI)

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