The first quarter of the year has blown by and we’re almost a third finished with the second quarter of 2013. (My, how time flies!) Now’s a great time to check your goals, tweak your budget, and get serious about the rest of the year.
Easier said than done, right?
It doesn’t have to be; there’s over 7 months left of this year and plenty of days to get a budget into shape.
As someone who easily gets side tracked, I know it’s harder to stick with a plan than to actually make the plan. But here’s where persistence pays off: over time, small accomplishments turn into bigger goals and progress builds upon itself.
A few things that work for me and keep me focused:
- Track progress. I started using excel to track my progress on paying off some debt. Since I only get paid once a month, I enter the balance of each card monthly when I make a large payment to every card. Over the past three months, I see a steady decrease in total debt. Whoo hoo!
- Stick to a monthly budget. If I didn’t know how much money I made or what my expenses were, I’d be in trouble. I stick to a monthly budget, most of the time, giving myself a little wiggle room for surprise expenses.
- Don’t get discouraged. Sometimes, set backs happen. Instead of throwing in the towel, I try to regroup and focus on the end goal.
- Apply windfalls towards goals. Whether your goal is savings or paying off debt, use those windfalls towards the ultimate goal. Instead of blowing that tax refund on dinners, clothing, and extraneous crap, get that debt paid off or cushion your savings/retirement account. You’d be amazed at how many
helpful tax calculators you can use to assist you with this.
I’m happy to report that I’ve been making good progress on my goals so far this year. I just need to make sure I don’t fall into a mid-year slump!
Are you making progress on your goals?