31 May, 2017 - 11:57 AM GMT

3 things to do when you want to turn over a new [financial] leaf

3 things to do when you want to turn over a new [financial] leaf.


You were pumped up for a new weight loss and get-fit program, you had the blender, shakes, books and online subscription. The only issue was that after 6 weeks of the program, you had not lost any weight and there was no real change. Would you continue or go back to your old ways? Probably the latter if you’re human.

Personal finance and financial planning is no different to fitness and weight loss. It’s about habit and behaviour. There is no point turning over a new leaf financially and wanting to take your finances to the next level unless you have a clear path, with no distractions and some accountability helps, too.


Three things you need to consider if you want to succeed financially:


#1 One thing at a time

It’s exciting, you are now pumped up about changing your ways – but do not let this be a hindrance to your progress. Make a list, even just three or four things you want to achieve. Prioritise them and only focus on the first thing on that list until it’s complete. It’s possibly worth putting the easy low hanging fruit goals early on the list. A sense of completion will give you the sense of progress and an emotional win, much like losing weight within the first month of a diet.

The ‘one thing at a time’ rule may slow other goals down, but remember you are trying to change your behaviour and sometimes delaying pleasure is something that our culture is not aware of. Who wants to fix a car gear box before an overseas holiday? No one, but the art of delaying pleasure will allow you to win in the future.


#2 Do not listen to your broke friends


It’s no secret that many people are driving around cars they can’t afford to impress people they don’t like. This usually is a symptom of not mastering the art of delaying pleasure. It’s ever so important when you want to turn over a new leaf that you be strong and to not listen to your friends. You may also need to say no to that extra night out or that random shopping trip. Most people do not know the intimate details of your personal finances and it’s actually none of their business. Many people will tell you that you’re not doing things right when you decide to actually get in control, only because it’s the opposite of what they are doing and what society and culture does. Be strong, say no & tell them that you’ll compare notes in a years’ time!


#3 Look at getting a wealth coach

It’s like personal training, but for your money! Yes, there are results to be had with your fitness outside of the gym and with your money without help – but if you want to turbo charge results and have someone in your corner, you should consider a wealth coach. There are many financial advisers who offer this as a service and can act as a sounding board for your goals, an accountability partner but more so a trusted adviser who is there if (well, when!) the going gets tough! Usually a wealth coach will pay for themselves with the results they bring. If you do consider this, give them a good shot of at least 6 months, 12 being recommended. Make sure they fit with your personality for an even better result. A great adviser in your area can be found on this website.


Glen James

Fortify Financial Advice Network