Goal based Financial Planning

Let your goals outline the financial planning

Sumeet Vaid, Financial Chronicle 26/1/2012

source: http://www.mydigitalfc.com/personal-finance/let-your-goals-outline-financial-planning-053

Budgeting is a spit-worthy word… Tell me honestly, how many of you have written down the details of every penny you spent on a piece of paper and then lost your peace of mind after looking at it. Every time I read personal finance articles that talk about maintaining records of all spending, cutting down on wasteful (read enjoyable) expenses, it puts me off. Why on earth are we working so hard to earn money, if we can’t indulge a bit? Any activity that does not make you happy is not worth doing. I think, it’s this fear of having to do budgeting that stops most people from doing financial planning. And I would say, fair enough.

Truth be told, budgeting sucks the energy out of activities meant to excite. It destroys peace around family dinners and makes you feel old and vain. Yet, it is important. It is the foundation on which wealth is built. Knowing how much money comes in and goes out is essential to determine how much can be put aside to reach goals and build wealth.
So, is there a way out? What is it?

I think, there does exist a way out. I’ll share with you, what works for me and for my client members. Don’t start financial planning with budgeting.

Start with your dreams, goals and aspirations. What is that thing that you want to do with your life? With your time? With your money? Think ahead into the future about the responsibilities you will have to fulfil, the dreams that you would like realised, the causes that you would like to support.

When you have put down your goals and aspirations, remind yourself that all this mean money. Find out or take some help to figure out how much money you will need to put your children through college, to go on that promised world tour and to establish a trust that will support a social cause.

Instead of fretting about the budget, work backwards on how much you will need to put away today and every coming day to live your dreams. Commit yourself to putting away whatever is necessary.

As soon as your salaries hit your bank account, move the amount required for reaching your goals to the savings account, and from there, to the designated investment vehicle. You can work around your expenses with the rest of the money.

Now, if the above has been done, you don’t have to bother about what you spend where. As long as you are meeting the requirements of fulfilling your basic needs and not borrowing, go ahead and spend. Don’t bother budgeting, earn a reprieve.

Don’t count on discipline, self control and the likes. Instead, automate your payments of credit card bill through ECS.
You can be rest assured that when your goals come due, you will have money. And you do even now, to spend as you please. No emotional baggages, no guilt, no month-end fretting — just lot more wealth.

***

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