The start of the new year comes with goalsetting. If you’re doing your goalsetting right you’ve got goals for each area of your life and that includes your finances. Money goals have far-reaching consequences and a lot in your life will depend on whether or not you achieve them. To give you some help with your money goals here are some top tips for the year 2022.

Should = must

People tend to procrastinate on things. We continually should start saving, should start an emergency, should set up other income streams and should start investing for the future. If you ever uttered these words before 2020 and didn’t act on them you likely came to regret not acting. With the coronavirus having taken over 2 whole years and the possibility of a third looming it’s time to realise that once you identify that you should do something it becomes a must to do it.

Take action

Tony Robbins said it best when he said “never leave the site of a goal without taking action”. The most important element in your goals and plans is action. We need to break down our goals into daily or weekly actions to give ourselves the best chance of keeping to them. So look at your goals and ask yourself if they are backed by action plans. Have you set out the steps required to set up an emergency fund? Have you broken down your plan to invest $10000 by year-end into $833.33 per month?

Reduce commitments

This is something that was once again reinforced by the emergence of the coronavirus. Keeping your committed costs as low as possible is important especially when things take a turn for the worse and incomes are impacted. Having lower committed costs gives you room to manoeuvre even if you do not have an emergency fund set up. It’s hard to say how much of your income should be allocated to committed costs but wherever you have a viable option to remove a committed cost you should take it.

Own your plans

I’ve spoken to many people who have tried making plans and goals around personal finances that didn’t work out. Many of these people experience problems because they have taken guidance or tips and tried to apply them to their lives without adjusting for context. Remember even the best advice from the best financial gurus has context and you need to make a note of the context. This is why I advise people to learn principles over methods. A method is saving 10% of your income every month. A principle is saving that 10% in US dollars to protect from inflation. This isn’t just inflation but about life. These plans are for you so they must be consistent and congruent with the rest of your life.

Learn your lessons

If for some reason I write a book this may well be the title. We have all made mistakes. If we are fortunate the mistakes are not fatal or final and they come with lessons. The biggest favour you can ever do yourself is agreed to learn the lesson. As they say, you will keep learning the lesson until the lesson is learnt. This is true, if you go through something and do not learn the lesson you will likely repeat the events that lead you there in the first place. Commit to learning the lessons from your mistakes, victories and other interactions. Sometimes we will get good results and attribute them to the wrong causes. Sometimes this will go bad and we will attribute the failure to the wrong causes. Make sure you learn the lesson from everything that happens to you.

Many goals are set in the lead up to the new year and at the first sign of adversity in the year they are discarded. If you are familiar with this break the chain this year and stay with us as we will have many discussions on pertinent personal finance issues.