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WELCOME THE NEW YEAR WITH NEW GOALS

Updated: Feb 26

How to Set and Achieve Your New Year's Resolutions for Personal and Professional Growth


When it comes to the start of a new year, I like to look ahead at what I would like to achieve during the upcoming year. I wouldn't label them as resolutions as such but rather as personal and financial goals that are realistically achievable. Now, if we unpack these goals, they are classified as follows:



PERSONAL GOALS

These are goals that I would like to personally grow into which are:


  1. Living Healthier – I want to go to the gym more consistently and meet my wellness benefit goals. In these times, technology can be a wonderful thing where you can engage with certain apps and devices and track your progress. By doing so, you are trying to live healthier (which means you live longer) and earn points that can be used for regular spending.

  2. Less take out – Preparing healthy meals at home can support your body's immune system and reduce the risk of illnesses, such as cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease. Better still, you know exactly what you are eating and how it is prepared, limiting your risk of food poisoning. Home-cooked meals can provide you with more energy and even help you sleep better at night. You can save money by ordering less take-out and cooking at home instead with proper planning.

  3. Read a book each month. In a world filled with information and insight, there are valuable lessons to be learned from previous experiences from many people, both past and present. These are encapsulated in their books. Reading also helps strengthen your brain, prevents cognitive decline, alleviates depressions, and can even lengthen your lifespan. It is an excellent way of relaxing in a quiet place and helps you switch your mind off to the hustle and bustle of busy days.

  4. Spend more quality time with my kids and family. Now in our world, it's easy to become distracted and to get caught up in work and social media. What about limiting the intake of this information and putting your phone down for a while. It provides more meaningful conversations and enhances quality time with your children and family. Put the phone away at certain times and dedicate all of you to your family.

  5. Get outside more. Vitamin D is good for your overall mood and health. Coming from lockdown and work stress, it's good to just get outside and smell the roses.

FINANCIAL GOALS


BUDGETS

We have discussed budgets before in previous newsletters, and I cannot express enough how important it is to create a budget.


While the word "budget" is often associated with restricting expenditure, it does not have to be restrictive to be effective. I peruse my budget monthly, and I do a forecast. A budget is there to provide you with a snapshot of where you are spending your money each month and how much money you have available to spend from certain incomes. Your expenses can be classified as fixed expenses and variable expenses.


Your fixed expenses are your mortgage, vehicle repayments, levies, rates, and other fixed costs you are liable for. They are commitments you need to regularly uphold.

Variable expenses are the expenses you swipe for on an ad-hoc basis. These include take-out meals, restaurants, entertainment, and movies.


"The cornerstone of good financial overall health is having and managing a successful budget. Because it allows you to control where your hard-earned money is being spent."


REDUCING UNNECESSARY DEBT


After reviewing my budget and capturing my fixed and variable expenses, I review everything and see where I can reduce my debts.

Look at your personal loans, credit cards, and clothing accounts to reduce your debt. Let's look at a step-by-step process :


Step 1 Personal loans and credit cards attract some of the highest interest in the short term. Credit card debt can quickly catch up on you. Do not spend on your credit card and instead focus on paying off the debt, one card at a time. Focus all of your available resources on one specific account or card, and pay that account and ad-hoc payment each month until it's paid in full.


Once it's fully paid, contact the credit institution, request the account closure, and confirmation must be emailed to you.

Step 2 Now the next account. Focus the regular premium into it, then add the premium you were paying in step 1 and the ad-hoc payment that you paid into step 1. You will see that you will reduce this account very quickly.


Once closed, contact the credit institution, and repeat what you did in step 1.


Step 3 Do exactly as explained in Step 2.


When these accounts are paid in full, it also reduces the line items in your monthly budget, which provides you with monthly savings that you were using on credit.


The savings on credit cards and loans provides you with more disposable income, allowing you to save money. Now you can find constructive ways of using this as opposed to debt. Look at paying off your mortgage sooner by working out what would happen should you add an extra R1000 to it.


Paying in a few hundred rands extra every month towards your home loan can:

  • Reduce your total interest significantly.

  • Shorten your home loan period.

You could also save towards a defined goal that you would like to do in the future or create an emergency fund or retirement fund that you regularly add to.


"Money Speaks One Language- Save Me Today, and I will Save You Tomorrow."


A PUSH IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION WITH A FINANCIAL ADVISOR

Suppose drafting a budget is challenging, or you cannot find the right balance between your income and expenses or where to start with your debt reduction. In that case, a personal financial advisor can step in to assist you.


Create a brighter, more prosperous year ahead when you plan your finances properly. If you need assistance with financial planning and a realistic approach that works for you, then contact Wallstreet Financial Services. We can help you plan the right way for a stronger year ahead.

MAINTAIN YOUR GOALS

The key to achieving your personal and financial goals is to ensure you set realistic goals for yourself and remind yourself regularly why you created those goals for yourself.


If you have a financial advisor, consider meeting with them to review the financial goals and objectives that you have established for the new year. A good idea is to create your own "Goals Checklist" to keep track of how you are doing throughout the year. Make modifications if you need but do not give up.


Your body will be a reflection of your personal goals. You will start feeling better both mentally and physically as you achieve your wellness goals. You will have more energy and more self-confidence to take on the year!



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