If you own a business, to some degree, achieving a financial balance is determined by your spreadsheet and financial goals. Your financial planner can be your ally in establishing realistic goals and determining how much money can be spent on company needs and how much is available to you as salary or bonus. Having a roadmap for your business helps provide structure for your business-related spending which can go a long way toward curbing spending sprees.
But in your personal life, it’s a different story. Even when you have a financial planner for tax or estate planning, setting personal financial goals often eludes all but the most financially savvy among us. As a result, it’s easy to slip into a mode of overspending that can wind up pushing you ever deeper into debt. The holidays are especially perilous when it comes to spending beyond your means: Not only are there gifts to buy for others, but there are also sales – lots of them, from the moment Halloween ends until the final gasping moments of the post-Christmas free-for-all, when merchants clear out seasonal items at rock-bottom prices.
The key to avoiding overspending in your personal life is the same as it is in your business: Careful planning with an eye toward the future. That means asking yourself the same type of questions: Where do you want to be in five years? 10 years? What do you need to comfortably retire? Envisioning concrete goals and milestones is often easier in business than it is in your personal life, and that’s why speaking with a financial planner about your own personal financial goals is critical. A financial professional can help you strike that balance between saving for your future and getting the most from life right now.
Studies have shown that achieving a healthy balance between spending to satisfy today’s needs and pleasures and saving for future needs results in the greatest emotional and psychological satisfaction, yet a recent survey by J.P. Morgan Chase revealed that only about a third of consumers believe they’ve achieved that balance – or some degree of it.
How do you get that balance? Scheduling regular meetings with a planner to sort out your personal financial life and to set goals. Year end is the ideal time to gauge where you are and to plan where you’re going. Give yourself an early holiday gift and set up a meeting today to start balancing your own financial life.