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Financial year

Goal setting for success this new financial year

New (financial) year, new you! We’ve put together a five-step plan to get you back on track to make your new year goals happen.
3 minute read
Financial year

Did you start the year strong with some great intentions and New Year's resolutions, but they’ve unfortunately fallen by the wayside? Don’t give up. A new financial year can be an ideal time to reset and get back on track!

Here’s a five-step process to help you reignite your motivation and kick-start your journey to a better, more financially secure, you.

  1. Revisit your goals
  2. Audit your situation
  3. Create the plan
  4. Assess and refine
  5. Get started

You can jump ahead using the links above to each step, or simply read on. Let's get into it!

1. Revisit your goals

While your New Year’s resolutions might’ve sounded like a good idea at the beginning of the year, is it still want you really want? Has anything changed since you set these goals? And have you thought about both your short- and longer-term goals, both financial and non-financial? This is your chance to re-jig your objectives.

As you’re reviewing what your actual goals should be, don’t set yourself up for failure – make sure you set SMART goals.

A SMART goal should stick to the following rules:

  • Specific – it’s clear, tangible and well-defined.
  • Measurable – it’s quantifiable and progress can be tracked.
  • Achievable – it’s realistic and, if needed, can be broken down into smaller steps.
  • Relevant – it aligns with your values and has meaning or benefit for you.
  • Time-bound – it has a set timeframe, clear deadline or specific end date.

2. Audit your situation

The next step is to take a good look at your current circumstances to know what you’re working with.

The questions you may want to ask yourself include:

  • Do I know how I spend my money and where it goes?
  • How much time, what skills and which resources do I have available?
  • How important are these goals and how will I prioritise them?
  • Am I aware of any upcoming events or changes which will have an impact?
  • Is there anything else that I need to factor into my goalsetting and planning?

3. Create the plan

Now, you’ll need to figure out how you’re going to achieve your goals (financial or otherwise) and plan for it.

Your plan of attack could involve some of the considerations below:

  • Establish a reasonable budget – create buckets for different expenses, set limits for what you’re comfortable spending, and work towards having a savings buffer or emergency fund for those rainy days.
  • Seek opportunities to reduce your expenses – review current subscriptions, shop around for insurance premiums, make use of shopping discounts, move to a more affordable location, bring in a housemate, etc.
  • Ways to boost your income – work towards a promotion or look for a new job, pick up odd jobs or offer your services on demand (e.g. house and pet sitting), turn a passion into a side hustle, etc.
  • Confirm what support you need – whether it be from your partner, family and friends, or an expert in a specific field, know who needs to be involved and don’t be afraid to ask for advice or assistance.
  • Find a system that works for you – keeping yourself disciplined is no easy feat, so keeping yourself as organised as possible (e.g. using a to do list app, kanban board tools, etc.) can be a big help to stay on track.

4. Assess and refine

After you’ve created the plan to achieve your goals, test it and put measures in place to keep you on track.

Ask yourself: Does my plan work? Is it achievable? Do I need to tweak anything?

Once you’re happy to finalise your plan, diarise regular checkpoints to measure how you’re progressing towards your goals and whether any further finetuning is needed.

Life and your personal circumstances can change in an instant, so reviewing your objectives and plans from time to time will give yourself a better chance of making your goals a reality.

5. Get started

You now have a clear picture of what you want and how you’re going to get there, so it’s time to get started!

Here are a few pointers to keep in mind:

  • Remember, it’s a journey and not a sprint to the finish line.
  • Focus on what’s within your control.
  • Don’t sweat the small stuff, keep a laser-focus on the prize.
  • Be patient as things may take longer than you think.
  • Reward yourself to reinforce good habits.

It’s also important to accept that life never goes exactly to plan – just roll with the punches and persevere, you’ll get there in the end!

You might also like:
> Creating a financial plan: How to set goals and achieve financial wellness while renting
> Point hacking: How to pay rent with a credit card and earn points
> How to ace your RentPay game

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