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Setting a Financial Vision for the New Year
Money Management

Setting a Financial Vision for the New Year

Human beings have five senses. However, vision is often thought of as the strongest of the senses. This is because humans depend heavily on vision compared to the other senses. The necessity of vision in the physical world indicates the importance of vision in other facets of our lives.

Vision gives a direction and allows us to see where we are headed. Hence, without vision in life, your life lacks direction.

That is why you must have a financial vision. You need to know where you want your life to go financially. This defines how much you want to earn and what you want to do with the money. 

As we start a new year, it is paramount that you set a financial vision for yourself. Here is how to go about it.

Benefits of Visualization

A big part of achieving your goals is execution. But a crucial part of that is deciding on what you will execute. If you cannot set a clear goal, you will be a busybody running up and down but getting nothing done.

That is where visualisation comes in. Thinking biologically, you have to see where you are going for you to get there. Suppose you were in a field. Right across the field, there is a tree. Then, you stand in a straight line toward the tree, get blindfolded, and are asked to walk in a straight line towards the tree. It will be challenging to get to the tree.

This is because you need vision to see where you are going. It is the vision that will help you self-correct your steps to maintain a straight line.

The same thing happens to our goals and achievements. You can wake up every morning and get to work, but you do not have a clear vision of what you are working towards, making it very difficult to maintain a straight line.

A vision is, therefore, the thing that aligns you with your goals. And even if you cannot see it with your physical eyes, you ought to see it in your head. You have to be clear about what it is.

Visualising your goal will give you the following psychological benefits

  • Having clarity of goal and motivation to go after the goal.
  • Having focus on the goal. Eyes on the prize.
  • Having improved performance since all your effort is channeled
  • Having goal commitment and adapting as required
  • Having goals that are aligned with your values.

One of the ways to ensure you have a clear vision of what you want to achieve is by having a vision board.

Creating a Financial Vision Board

A vision board is a physical representation of the dreams and ambitions that inhabit your mind. All the aspirations you have and the goals you would like to achieve are represented on a physical board that you can look at.

Holding these aspirations in the head sometimes makes them feel obscure and intangible. But, once you concretize them by putting them on a vision board, you increase your ability to achieve them because they feel tangible.

Here is how to create a financial vision board.

Define Your Financial Goals - First, you must define your financial goals by narrowing down your aspirations to tangible achievable. If you want to drive, it does help to decide what type of vehicle you would like because that will inform how much money you need to purchase and maintain the vehicle. If buying land, you must narrow it down to where it should be because land prices vary by location and size.

Find Visual Representations - The advantage of having a vision board is seeing what you are working towards. Hence, you need visualizations. Mostly, you can use pictures of the items you want. For instance, you can populate your vision board with pictures of the vehicle, house, clothes, equipment, and vacation locations you want to achieve. This way, your goals are not just an abstract idea in your head; instead, there is something you can look at.

Organize Your Goals - It is given that you will not achieve all the goals at once. You will, therefore, need to organise them in order of preference or priority. If you want to buy a vehicle before buying a house, the picture of the car should be more visible than that of the house. This is to help you focus and direct your energy to a specific goal.

Add Personal Touch - Do not let the vision board be boring. Customize it to your liking to motivate you the way you need. Use the language you love and visual stylistic devices that you relate to. The more you own the board, the more effective it will be for you.

Display the Board - Do not make a vision board and tuck it in the closet. The vision board is a reminder and inspiration to do what you need to do to achieve your goals. Hence, it should be in an accessible place where you can constantly look at it and remind yourself of what you are working towards.

Take Action - Having a vision board is excellent, but having representations of your goals is not having the actual things you’d like. There is work that has to go into it. Putting in the work is crucial to making a vision board come to life.

Incorporating Long-Term Goals and Short-Term Goals

Some goals are short-term and easily achievable, while others take years. 

As you plan your financial vision for the new year, you can include everything you want to achieve within the year. These will be short-term goals. These will be easy to check off. You might be tempted to put only these short-term goals because they indicate progress and achievement.

However, you should also have long-term goals. Buying land, building a home, and saving capital for an investment might take a few years. Nonetheless, they should be on the vision board for however long they take. 

You can have a tracking system on the vision board to indicate their progress. For instance, you can add a percentage of completion next to each goal on the vision board to visually represent your progress in such goals.

Making the Vision Actionable

 A vision board should not be a clutter of goals you aspire to achieve. It should be a tool that helps you approach your goals systematically.

Everyone has their way of organising their vision board. One of the efficient ways is by organising the goals by month. If you want to have finished paying off a particular debt by the third month of the year, you put the debt representation in March. 

The other way to do it is to tag your representation with the date of expected achievement so that you understand your timeline. You can also add a tracking mechanism by updating your board with a completion percentage during your monthly or quarterly review. 

Your vision board should help you have clear timelines, actionable steps, and a review process to help you stay up to date.

Staying Motivated

Having a vision board does not mean that it is now given that you will achieve your goals. Many people create vision boards at the beginning of the year and abandon them as the year progresses. It is essential to stay motivated as you check off your goals list.

One of the ways to do that is to track your progress regularly. By tracking progress, you allow yourself to celebrate your small wins, which motivates you to do more to win even more.

You can adjust your goals if need be. Sometimes, you might be very ambitious while setting goals, and then some time into it, you realise the goal is realistic and worth your pursuit, but in the timeline you set. It is okay to adjust the goal or the timeline. If the goal is too big, you might get demoralized.

You can also have an accountability partner to help keep you in check. An accountability partner will push you to get things done when you don’t feel like avoiding falling off and neglecting your goals. 

Wrapping Up

A new year is here. As the motivation gurus put it, this is one year or year one. It is up to you to decide what this year will mean in your life. If you want the year to be significant, starting with a financial vision is a good idea. Whether you have ever made a vision board or have never, try it and stay faithful to it; you will thank yourself at the end of the year.

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Stephen Kimani aka KIMSpeaks is a thought leader, speaker, and writer. He is also the Founder of Living the DREAM. He is passionate about learning and teaching ideas that empower people to improve the quality of their lives. You can connect with Kimani on LinkedIn.

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