3 ways to check in with your finances

We often prioritize our health, family obligations and career goals – but what about your finances? If a grading system existed to rate your finances; what would the results show? To make sure there’s a clean bill of financial health regardless of life circumstances, use the following tips to keep working toward your money goals. 

Identify and evaluate your financial goals

It’s time to assess your progress! In order to create (or revamp) a plan that’s reasonable and effective you must take note of where you currently are. Many of us tend to bite off more than we’re able to chew, creating feelings of overwhelm and exhaustion. In order to avoid this from happening, limit your focus, generate positive feelings about your plan and always remember how your commitment has no choice but to work in your favor. For example, if you want to focus on rebuilding your emergency savings, you shouldn’t concern yourself with saving for a new car right now. Make sure your goals are cohesive and don’t compete with one another. Conflicting goals not only deter you from your goals, they also distract you – resulting in losing momentum. 

Ask yourself:

  • Are my goals reasonable?
  • Have I set a timeline that works?

Remember – this plan is meant to empower you and your finances.

Review your budget regularly

No matter what, your budget can be altered, completely scrapped or re-prioritized based on current life demands. Take the time to create a budget that’s effective, but also challenging enough to meet your goals. Adopt a cash method for discretionary spending if swiping your debit cards prove to be too much temptation. The key to adhering to your budget will be the systems and methods that are put in place to serve as guardrails. While the shortcomings you may experience aren’t broadcasted to the world, you know them better than anyone else. Use methods to keep you and your finances on track. 

Work your plan and stay committed

Once you’ve made your list and determined your areas of focus, think about different strategies you can put in place to help you achieve your goals. If one of your values is centered around consistent travel, create a plan that allows you do that without the unnecessary stress of depleting your savings account, adding on unwanted debt or overworking yourself. Ramping up your side hustle, saving an extra amount of money per paycheck, automating a portion to another savings account or cutting one recurring expense are all tangible ways to help you crush your goals. Be easy on yourself; this takes time! As you continue to work your plan you will be able to identify and understanding what methods are most effective. After completing these steps, you should have a clean bill of financial health!

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The Finance Bar is a personal finance suite helping women and couples achieve financial wellness through financial therapy, education, and an innovative learning hub on wheels. Creator Marsha Barnes is Certified in Financial Therapy, Financial Social Work, and serves as an Official FICO Brand Ambassador, and was named GOBankingRates’ Best Money Expert in the Net-Worth Category.

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