11 June 2014
Halftime Checkup - 2014 New Year's Financial Resolutions
Many of us struggle in setting goals and sticking to them until completion. I’m included in this category in some areas of my life. A study conducted by the University of Scranton reveals that only 8% of people that make resolutions or set goals at the first of the year actually reach them. Statistics show that after the second week of January 29% of New Year’s resolutions are prematurely abandoned. I find that I along with many individuals that I speak with clearly have the intentions of sticking to our personal goals but often end up with a story instead of a testimony when we report on our success.
Financial goals seem to be a part of our New Year's resolutions of many. Commonly seen financial goals include managing personal finances with a spending plan, improving savings balances, maintaining a good credit score and getting out of debt. Achieving these goals will require flesh focused sacrifices. Money that was once spent on last minute sale items, sporting events or an unplanned dining out experiences must now be redirected toward actions that lend themselves to meeting the established financial goals. Taking the actions steps to achieve these goals may appear to become difficult, boring or time consuming - especially if these are actions are outside of your normal ways of operating.And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.
Galations 6:9 KJV
This scripture is speaking to us about our flesh - our physical body and our real world circumstances. When we grow tired of a situation we tend to say “I don’t care anymore”. When we let ourselves grow tired or weary, we’re giving our flesh a loaded gun and our most desired goals and objectives are in the direct line of fire. We begin having casual conversations with the strongest negotiator that we will ever meet - our flesh. At the end of these casual conversations we begin vocalizing self-destructive things like “I’m sick of this”, “I’m tired”, “I’m taking a break on this” and “I’ll get back on track tomorrow”. In the blink of an eye we’ve compromised our goals and our financial breakthrough!
If you've grown weary in your quest to meet your financial goals I'm hear to encourage you to press on. It's not over - just halftime. There's another half to this year and let's regroup!! Here's three tips to help you to maintain your strength as you regain your momentum in meeting those financial goals that you set at the beginning of the year.Define what weary means to you when you set the goal so that you will recognize the symptoms.
but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.
You will be tempted to quit and turn back while on your improvement journey. The temptations will come but they won't be anything that you cannot handle and overcome. Know your weak points in this area and identify these sabotaging conditions and detail what you will do to overcome them. Will you be tempted to stop taking your lunch to work based on the untruth that the little bit that you’re saving isn’t making a difference? Will you seriously consider that you can again spend money earmarked for paying a bill and buy those unbudgeted Girl Scout cookies? These are financial sabotage temptations that you can escape. Detail what you will do in these situations and in advance declare the victory on paper. Write it down so that you can reflect on these action steps as often as needed!2. Make note of the “Little Victories” along the way. They are reminders that your actions are making a difference and getting you closer to your goal!
The light of the eyes rejoices the heart, And a good report make the bones healthy.
Proverbs 15:30 NKJV
Did you manage your spending for 7 days straight? Write it down and celebrate it!
Did you save money this week by cutting your grocery bill? If you did write it down and say so!
Did you pay extra on a debt? If so, write it down!
When you hear the lie that states that what you’re doing is not making a difference, you have real evidence to squash this flesh negotiation tactic!
I once created a monthly newsletter that had a page to focus on these “Little Victories” when leading a debt reduction session. Seeing these items in this newsletter was the highlight of the team meetings. How about sharing these celebrations with your social media friends and followers?3. Pray that your flesh is weakened as a part of striving to reach your goals.
This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.
Galations 5:15 KJV
Your flesh is weakened as your Spirit is strengthened. If the flesh has little or no power to persuade you to quit, the battle is over before it begins! If you brush your teeth each morning even though you are sleepy and groggy, your flesh has no power over you in the area of morning dental hygiene. Pray that your spirit overpowers your flesh in those areas that are required for you to reach your financial goals.
Ok… when it comes to those financial New Year's resolutions halftime is over. We've gotten a bit of rest and the pep talk. Get back into the game! Each of us have a great chance of gaining a lot of ground in the area personal financial health!!
Look for another checkup on this subject…