When you make a goal or a financial plan or if you have a dream you want to achieve, it is fairly easy to come up with a plan that will help you reach that financial goal. The planning part is the easiest part of the entire process. You should be able to set down a path or several steps that will help you reach your goal. This is the easiest part, and if you need to complete some research to learn what steps you need to take to purchase your first home, open your own business or become a manager at your dream company you can do that fairly easily. It is only a plan and you have not committed yourself to making it yet.
The hard part comes when it is time to execute that plan. Once you have figured out the steps you need to take to get there, it is simply a manner of executing those steps in the proper order at the correct time. This is a lot easier than it seems. For example, if you know you want to lose weight and you have developed a good exercise and diet plan, you need to follow through. It is much easier to write down that you will exercise for an hour each day than it is to get up and do it. The same holds true for most of your other goals in life. It is easier to create the plan than it is to execute it.
It takes a lot to change your financial habits, and it often means changing your routine or parts of your life to have success. When it comes to your finances, you need to take an honest look at yourself and your habits to figure out what you are doing to stop yourself from succeeding. It may be something simple to identify like going grocery shopping when you are hungry. Or it may be more complicated like you tend to overspend when you are out with friends. Even as adults it is easy to succumb to financial peer pressure to keep up with the latest brands or most popular items, and then there is the fact that you do not want any one to know that you are struggling financially. You need to make sure that your spending matches your priorities, or you will not get ahead financially.
Take time before you begin executing your plan to look for any financial roadblocks you may be putting up. Are your procrastinating investing because you are scared about investing? Is it because you have never done it before or is it because the idea of putting your money out there that scares you? Once you have identified the fear you can begin to educate yourself and learn whether it is founded or not. And then you can figure out the best way to remove that financial roadblock.
One common example of having a difficult time sticking to a budget may be that someone tends to eat out multiple times a week. Identifying this as a problem to sticking to your budget is just the first step. The second step is to figure out why you keep returning to this behavior you want to change. It may be because by the time work is over you are too tired to cook at home, so you grab something on the way home. You may be wanting to take lunch to work, but you are embarrassed to brown bag it around your colleagues or you want a chance to leave the office each day. If you are too tired to cook in the evenings you can prepare dinner in the morning in a slow cooker or refrigerate it and just pop it in the oven when you get home. Buy a cool lunch box and make lunches your coworkers will envy, if you are embarrassed to eat a home cooked lunch in front of them. If you want to leave the office, take your lunch with you and eat a nearby park or out on a patio somewhere.
There are ways to work around your roadblocks, but you need to recognize them. After you have worked on your goal for a week, evaluate it and adjust your plan and habits so that you can reach it. Do this again after a month, and again in three months. This will give you the chance to truly change your habits and give you the opportunity to reach your financial goals and dreams. You can make lasting changes to your habits and be prepared to take the next financial steps when you are ready. This will help you to reach the goals you have set for yourself.