This second week of our Back to Basics series is all about you: what you want, what is important to you, what motivates you. Understanding yourself (and your spouse, if you are married) is a very important part of building and executing a good financial plan. Why? Because everyone is different. We all have different values, different thoughts, and different things we want out of life. Figuring yourself out, and learning about what your spouse/partner things, is the most important part of motivating yourself to make changes.
These little exercises this week might seem hokey, but they work.
Today's exercise: spend a few minutes today thinking about your financial dreams. Don't worry about the details right now, just jot down a list of things that you would like to make happen somehow. Think one year, five years, even 20 years. Maybe you want to buy a Harley after this deployment? Write it down. Do you want to retire young? Write it down. How about buying a house?
Having a hard time thinking of dreams? Here are some things that other people have thought:
- always having the money to pay bills when they arrive
- a trip to Italy
- pay off credit cards
- not having to count pennies at the grocery store
- to help children pay for college
- to save money for retirement
- to buy a house
- pay off car loan
- build an emergency fund
- learn another language
- to open a restaurant
- a new wardrobe
- to buy a car
- pay off student loans
- go skydiving
- quit their job
- a vacation house
- hiring a house cleaner
- move into their own apartment
I look forward to hearing your dreams. We'll do more brainstorming this week, then next week we'll figure out how to make them happen.
This post is part of the Back to Basics Series. Week One was focused on figuring out your current financial situation, including figuring out those places where money slips out of your pocket and how to access your TSP account online.