25 Mar Money and Happiness
Though some people say that “money can’t buy happiness,” having lots of money can mean a sense of stability in our daily lives.
It’s obvious that money or having that state of financial stability is an essential contributor to our happiness.
When we handle money properly and spend it wisely, then it gives us an appropriate amount of importance in our lives and makes us more fulfilled and content.
In the quest to becoming stable and financially able in the future, we often set goals.
We set different goals: get a house for our family, retire at a young age, prepare a college fund for your kids and live on day-to-day basis debt-free.
These goals allow us to live our daily lives completely focused on what is important for us.
But some fear that the goals we set for ourselves might change entirely as we live our lives that we entirely quit on making goals at all.
But making and changing goals is not really that problematic at all. You just have to gear your goals towards a future where you are happy and financially unburdened.
In fact, some millenials actually think that money can be equated to a more fulfilled life.
According to Forbes.com, a new Wells Fargo study back in 2017 suggests that millenials or those under ages 20 to 36 link satisfaction and happiness with stability and financial responsibility.
About a third of the study’s participants are satisfied with their financial status and 62% felt happy overall, with 65% using the word “meaningful” to describe their lives.
At this day and age, money and happiness can go together.
How to find happiness in setting financial goals?
Here are some tips to achieve happiness and financial success:
Living in the present? How do you prepare for the future?
When it comes to setting financial goals, it is always important to go back to the present moment and setting up the mental framework necessary. At this moment, you question your personal financial status at present. Questions like:
- Do you have job that provides a stable income?
- If you don’t have a job, how do you plan to earn money?
- Do I own properties, or does my property own me?
- What is important: money or career?”
Answering those questions will allow you to start the process on how you plan to prepare your future and gaining peace with yourself. Sometimes, attaining a reason why we need to do this can help in setting your goals. Once you attain your reason, this will act as a compass for everything that you do. What is important is that the reason that you want to attained not only benefits you, but also your loved ones as well.
2. Needs, in. Wants, Out
De-cluttering what you need and want is often a big challenge for those aiming to go financially straight. We often periodically go to our possessions to get rid of stuff that we don’t need. By decluttering and deciding on what is needed or wanted, you are able to make a responsible choice on what to acquire in the future. For those who practice this, it also allows them to develop the attitude of not being needlessly tempted to buy stuff that are considered popular in favor on what is needed. Its a hard process, especially in letting go of things, but it is rewarding at the long run. Also, de-cluttering allows you to not only dispose things that you don’t need, but earn a little buck along the way as well.
3. Set short term goals.
Like what’s been said earlier, goals are good to plan but difficult to follow, especially on a long run. But goals are not all that bad. Rather than focus on a long-term goal, focus on short-term but attainable goals that will allow you to focus more on the process and see the rewards immediately. Short-term goals can be creating a monthly budget, paying a small debt, avoiding impulse purchases or swearing off credit card purchasing are simple but attainable goals that will allow you develop your end goal to attaining financial freedom in the future. Never make general goals as they end up unattainable. Rather than say “I want to get out of debt,” just say “I want to pay off $40,000 worth of debt within a year.” Its specific, measurable, realistic and importantly, attainable.
4. Conducting a “Status Check” on your present finances.
If you feel you have been spending your monthly salary on absurd things and lifestyles, then its time for status check. A “Status Check” is necessary to determine what you need to prioritize on in preparation for your future. Do you need to cut yourself from constant partying with friends during the weekends? Do you need to cut off excessive spending due to constant shopping? Do you continue to eat out and putting risk on your wallet and your health as well? These questions should remind you what there is a need for a “Status Check” on yourself. When you set a financial goal, its important to realize that in order to achieve it, it will require some sacrifices on your part. Taking on a “Status Check” allows you cut off bad habits and developing good ones when it comes to your financial status.
5. Being frugal has its benefits.
Frugality could have lasting good effects on you, especially on how you handle your finances. While being cheap means it was painful to spend money, whether for needs or wants, frugality allows you still spend but without the pain.
Rather than taking your loved one out for a date in a very expensive restaurant, why not prepare a sumptuous home-cooked meals? It saves you money and makes the experience more personal. Sometimes, there is nothing wrong with being dependent on budget coupons if you know how to make use of them. If it allows you to enjoy the regular things you want without spending too much, then you’re in the right direction.
6. Start implementing those goals and reflect on them if they’ve been attained or not.
Remember the old saying “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step?”
Even with all the goals that you have set, it will never be attained if you don’t start implementing them.
If you have set a time-frame on what to do, you have no choice but to make them happen. Stop procrastinating and starting taking action. Once you start implementing them, monitor your progress through constant reminders by Google Calendar or post-it-notes in your calendar. If you are not constantly reminded of your goals, then it makes it harder to be attainable.
Once you’ve set your goals, then start reflecting on them. How did you get to where you are now? What steps did you take? What obstacles were preventing you from achieving your goals? How did you manage to get rid of those obstacles? Whether you attained those goals or not, reflection is an important step to knowing what mistakes must be avoided. Through knowing the mistakes and the successes you’ve made in attaining that goal, then you can apply good practices and ignore bad ones.
7. Learn from your successes and mistakes.
Committing to be more financial stable is not a walk in the park. In everything we do, we all have our hits and misses. The important thing is that whatever is thrown at us, we have to learn to embrace it. Success often goes hand in hand with failure. There will always be those moments you get to miss paying out on your bills because you made the mistake of spending money on unnecessary things. If you want to be financially stable, ridding these mistakes from your system are necessary. Mistakes like borrowing money to spend on fancy things or not saving for emergencies shouldn’t be repeated. Don’t treat your goals as simple lists of what to do but as stepping stones on learning how to achieve financial stability in the future.
Preaching is easier but practicing what you preach is harder. That’s why its important to practice on how to simply attain your goals. Constant practice makes perfect and it doesn’t take a genius to realize that you’ve already done what you set out to do.
Finally, discipline is a key factor. Those goals you set for yourself will never be realized if you don’t have the willpower to focus on them. Always think of the end goal and just focus on running there. If you want to target on saving a huge amount of cash for a year, it can be attainable as long as you discipline yourself and always have your eye on your specific goal.
Also, money is an important factor in achieving your goals. If you don’t have money, you don’t get to achieve what you want with your life. So focus on earning your money, saving them and making them grow, and eventually, someday, you can be a millionaire and billionaire in your own right.