Often, the hardest part of getting started is getting started, amiright? Especially when you're trying something totally new. You're fired up and motivated to make progress, but you don't know where to direct all that energy!
This month, in a special blog series, we'll be laying out potential starting steps for the most common goals we hear in the Cultivate community. Each week, along with some of your most trusted experts, we'll bring you starting steps for health and wellness goals, finance goals (today!), parenting and family relationship goals, spiritual and personal growth goals, and finally, business and work goals.
Finances can feel big and scary — and yet they are the underpinning for every other goal, in many ways! — so encouragement at the start is extra-important. As big and scary as finances may seem, here's the good news: there is no one perfect way to make progress. So, read through the advice below, consider your own goals, choose a path, and dive in TODAY!
Take the first step towards financial wellness by writing out on one sheet of paper what or who your priorities are in life. Money is a resource that allows you freedom: freedom to explore life, freedom to take a break when you need to, or freedom to leave situations that no longer serve you. Always remember that financial wellness is a form of self-care. — Marsha Barnes, founder of The Finance Bar
If you’re serious about getting serious with your finances, my biggest piece of advice is to guard your eyes and ears, and be sure you are filling them with positive messages about stuff and money! When my husband and I were serious about getting out of debt and paying off our house, we listened to Dave Ramsey nonstop. It was motivational and kept us on track with our goals! I also unfollowed people that made me want to spend money, and practiced cleaning out my house and really taking inventory of the things I already own. — Nancy Ray, author of The Contentment Challenge
Open up a “dream account.” This is a free/no fee savings account (like a Capitol One 360 account) that you will use to save up little by little toward a dream of yours, like a family vacation you’ve always wanted to take or a small house renovation you’ve been dreaming of. Calculate the total cost of the dream and (using the spending data you've accumulated), figure out how much you can afford to cut back on spending on things you don't really care about to divert those funds into this dream account, and then automate that savings transfer monthly! — Shay Cochrane, personal finance enthusiast
Friends, I hope these ladies gave you a few things to think about as you set out on your finance goals this year! Below, I've rounded up some of our best resources for your use along the way. We're cheering you on!
- The Finance Goal Guide | The perfect companion to your PowerSheets, this downloadable guide will help you set and achieve your health and wellness goals.
- Our Favorite Cheap and Easy Date Nights
- How to Pay Down Debt
- Budget-Friendly Celebration Tips
- A webinar with Emily and Shay: the top 5 ways to cultivate your finances
- How to Build a Budget
- How to Track Your Spending
- Goal Action Ideas for Finance Goals
- How to Cultivate What Matters in Your Finances
Check back on Friday for a post from yours truly! :) I'll be breaking down one of the most important financial goals you can tackle: building an emergency fund. Can't wait to share!