6. Set Goals
Put together a short-term plan, a medium-term plan, and a long-term plan with goals in each. Spend some time so the goals in each plan align with each other and make logical sense. For example, you may want to save for a car or a vacation in the short term. How will that work with your plan to pay off that credit card and ultimately pay off longer term debt and saving for retirement?
Be as specific as possible. Your plan shouldn’t be just a vague statement that says you will pay off debt. It should include how much you are paying, how often, and where that money is coming from.
The more specific you can be about your plans, the easier it is to follow and the higher the chance you’ll meet your goals.
5. Learn to Be at Peace with the Outcome
Life is unpredictable. You do your best to follow your plan, but emergencies can sometimes knock you off track. Longer term goals will often involve an assumption of investment returns, and we all know how unpredictable that can be.
Obstacles is to be expected. Don’t ever confuse the outcome with your plan. Keep revising the specifics as time goes on. Plus, not all surprises are bad ones. Just as accidents happen all the time, you may catch a lucky break and get a good stretch of solid investment gains too. If you are in the game for the long haul, then you will get both the good and bad breaks. Expect the unexpected and keep moving forward.