In the world of personal finance, achieving monetary success is not just about numbers and traditional models of goal-setting. Taking a moment to identify your intentions around your finances can serve as a compass to guide your decisions, and help you align your actions with your values.
As we reflect on 2023 and look ahead to the new year, setting intentions for 2024 can be a supportive way to continue pursuing financial well-being while also promoting ease and stability in your life. By cultivating a holistic approach that combines financial awareness with self-care, you can strike a balance that leads to a more fulfilling and sustainable financial journey.
Ready to align your money with your values?
Intentions Over Resolutions
New Year’s resolutions seem like a great idea, but they are often abandoned once the excitement of the new endeavor wears off – sometimes after only a few weeks or months. By rooting your goals in a sense of intention, it may be easier to stay connected to the motivation to follow through on them.
Resolutions can take the form of specific achievements or actions, while intentions represent the why of what you do. By setting an intention – understanding the core reason or value behind the goal you’re planning to pursue – you can provide the fuel for your own progress, and offer yourself a focal point to return to if you start to fall off track.
1. I Will Build Money Awareness
The first step toward financial empowerment is developing self-awareness around how you view the role of money in your life, and how that impacts your day-to-day financial decisions. Everyone has a unique financial background that influences how they interact with money. Many of our financial habits – both helpful, and more difficult – are formed when we’re young, modeled to us as we watch how our friends and families navigate monetary considerations.
To develop money awareness, it helps to know your baseline. Our financial archetype quiz can help you gain insights into your unique relationship with money, and tailor your financial strategies accordingly.
Once you take your financial archetype quiz, you can map out how your archetype impacts your financial life today.
What does this look like in practice?
Schedule regular check-ins with yourself to go over your finances. This practice is like a wellness check for your wallet. You’ll gain a current snapshot of your financial well-being, helping you identify areas for improvement while also creating a moment to celebrate your successes.
Two great points to focus on as you start building awareness are:
- Set a time to review your accounts quarterly. Make it a habit to assess your accounts on a quarterly schedule. This intention ensures you stay informed about your financial standing, allowing for timely adjustments and strategic planning.
Regularly evaluating bank accounts, investment or brokerage accounts, and your credit card statements can help you maintain perspective on where you are, and keep the path to your goals clear.
- Track cash flow. Empower yourself by understanding where your money comes from, and where it goes. Tracking inflow and outflow enables you to make informed decisions and take control of your financial destiny.
This can also help clarify whether your spending aligns with your values. Knowing where your money is going can be a fantastic gut check, as you decide whether you’re making decisions that reflect your financial archetype and intentions, or if you need to make adjustments to continue moving toward the financial future you desire.
2. I Will Tune Out The Noise
The persistent influx of financial information from any number of sources can undoubtedly contribute to money-related anxiety. With endless media and news coverage about the markets, and influencers on social media handing out potentially unqualified financial advice, it can feel impossible to escape opinions about what you should be doing with your money.
With all this input, it’s easy to fall into a sense that you are less informed than your peers, not as far along as you should be, or any other form of self-judgment that might creep in. Recognizing the signs of financial anxiety and taking proactive steps to address them can mitigate stress and help you recenter in empowerment around your own financial health.
Unplug from sources of financial noise that don’t serve your well-being. Whether it’s the news, social media, or peer pressure, setting boundaries can help you maintain focus on your personal financial goals. It can also be helpful to set a specific intention around your financial boundaries. This might look like:
- Limiting exposure to external influences, allowing you to make financial decisions based on your needs and values rather than societal expectations.
- Choosing to unfollow financial experts or influencers online who offer insights that don’t align with your goals or values.
- Not over-researching things that cause you stress, like stock market performance or pundits estimating when the next recession will hit.
Deciding what and who has access to you and influence over your financial decisions isn’t the same as being avoidant or uninformed. You can absolutely educate yourself and make empowered decisions while also opting out of fear-based messaging and the 24-hour news cycle.
3. I Will Incorporate Financial Self-Care
Financial self-care can help you stay on track as you work toward your goals, celebrate your financial wins, and create healthy money habits. Here are a few ways you can practice financial self-care:
- Commit to a hobby. Engaging in hobbies is an investment in your well-being. Hobbies provide joy, reduce stress, and contribute to a more balanced life. Discovering a new hobby, or reigniting an old one, can be a deeply gratifying journey. Whether you’re taking a pottery class, hiking, or simply exploring your neighborhood, find an activity that resonates with your interests and adds value to your life. This doesn’t need to translate to a big financial commitment. Explore cost-effective ways to get started, such as joining local clubs and groups, using online resources, or repurposing existing materials.
- Seek easily accessible ways to connect with joy. Financial self-care doesn’t have to look like expensive spa days, lengthy trips, or ‘treating yourself’ to extravagant things you may or may not need. Sometimes the most impactful financial self-care practice is a small expense: buying a better coffee maker to improve your morning cup, investing in a premium meditation app, or upgrading some other part of your routine can be a great way to keep spending down while still practicing self-care.
- Celebrate milestones. Whether you’ve paid off a credit card, reached a savings goal, or have simply been spending in alignment with your financial plan, celebrating milestones to mark your progress is an important part of recognizing your own efforts and reminding yourself of the value of continuing to work toward financial goals.
- Plan experiences. Whether it’s a trip with your family, a group dining experience, or just a day at your favorite local attraction, experiences often hold greater meaning, create lasting memories, and bring more sustained contentment than purchasing material items.
If one of your intentions this year is to build financial self-care into your life, remember to set yourself up for success by budgeting time for these things and really following through. You can even automate a weekly or paycheck-based contribution into a self-care fund to make any correlated expenses feel deliberate and comfortable because you’ve already planned ahead for them.
4. I Will Delegate and Bring In Help
Evaluating your life and finances and determining where you might benefit from assistance can have positive ripple effects. Finding ways to delegate tasks or work with an expert can free up your time, reserve energy for the people and activities that matter to you most, and potentially elevate the decisions you make. There are a variety of ways you might consider increasing your support:
- Hire out daily activities. Whether you hire a landscaper, order meal delivery, schedule housekeeping, or engage with a laundry service, freeing up time in your day can make a marked impact on your quality of life.
- Bring in an expert. A financial planner, a tax professional, an estate planning attorney. Whoever suits your needs, their expertise can potentially help you optimize your decisions and streamline the more critical elements of your financial life.
- Look for accountability. Talking to a personal trainer, coach, or even a group or club that holds your same values can help you to stay on track toward your goals – financial or otherwise.
Delegating tasks isn’t a sign of weakness, it’s a strategic move toward a healthier work-life balance. Embrace the concept of opening to support so that you can focus on what you do best while ensuring all other aspects of your life are well-managed, too.
Leverage Money Intentions to Find Wellbeing
True financial health extends beyond the numbers, it also includes physical, emotional, and mental well-being. When you recognize the interconnectedness of these aspects, you can strive for a greater balance between working toward goals and living right now.
Setting and prioritizing intentions allows you to lay the foundation for long-term financial success and stability. But the journey is not just about the destination – finding ease, joy, and fulfillment along the way is also integral to a well-rounded experience. Ideally, your money is a tool that helps you secure a future you love, while also fully enjoying the present.
Over the coming year, remember to embrace the process, stay committed to the intentions you’re setting right now, and continue to explore and offer yourself the holistic benefits of a balanced financial life.
Looking for help? Our team is here to support you, whatever your financial intentions. Reach out to us today by scheduling a call. Together, we can work toward creating a balanced financial plan that supports your holistic well-being.