At the end of the year there are many articles, blogs and posts encouraging us to set SMART financial goals for the new year. I have read widely around this subject in preparation for my blog today and must admit that the following three steps have been ‘magpied’ from Christy Wright. I have found that the three simple steps are all you need to set yourself SMART financial goals for the year ahead. I have added to and expanded on Christy’s original idea, in the hope that you will find my ideas and examples motivating!
How was 2021 for you? When preparing goals for the year ahead, I always find it helps to reflect on the past year. When you have found a quiet place, sit down with your favourite brew, and maybe some leftover Christmas chocolates, and reflect on 2021. When you are ready, you can set SMART financial goals for 2022.
What went well in 2021?
What are you pleased with? What went well? What do you want to carry on in 2022? For us, it was sitting down every month and budgeting together. Now I’m not saying that it’s perfect, but it’s baby steps in the right direction and I am keen to keep this going!
What could have gone better in 2021?
What could have been better? What things do you want to do differently this year? Don’t be too hard on yourself, there are many things that we can’t control so don’t beat yourself up over those, think about something that you could control and think about what you could do differently in 2022. Also, don’t compare yourself to others on social media, personal finance is personal – it’s about you!
Do you have anything new to focus on in 2022?
Do you want to focus on anything new this year? Focus on your debt snowball, work on your side hustle, spend more quality time with your family, commit to a weekly date night. Have a think and write down any ideas that you have and then share them with your spouse and / or family.
Write down your goals!
Writing down any goal will help you to achieve it. Research shows that people who write down their goals and revisit them regularly have a good chance of achieving them.
What are SMART Goals?
Specific – be clear!
Measurable – Can you measure your progress? Your progress should be easy to track.
Achievable – Ensure that your goals are attainable. Don’t set yourself up to fail.
Relevant – Is this a worthwhile goal?
Timed– Set yourself a start and end target date.
Here’s an example of my SMART goal:
Specific – I will meet with Bob once a month to create a budget for the month ahead.
Measurable – I will ensure that Bob and I have the money date night in our diaries.
Achievable – I am married to Bob and we have started to budget together, so let’s not lose the momentum.
Relevant – In order to get out of debt, stay out of debt and build wealth, this is an important way forward.
Timed – We can meet once a month, just before pay date, for the next twelve months.
In summary, SMART goals are effective and can help you gain clarity on your goals and what you need to do to achieve them.
Now it’s your turn! Take some time to create your own SMART financial goals for 2022 and, if you would like, share them below!