Money matters, money talks, money is everywhere we go. We cannot escape the importance of money, so why are so many of us struggling with or nervous about our finances? We think we all deserve the freedom of choice and mobility that feeling on top of your finances brings and welcome the lovely ray of sunshine that is Laura Ann Moore into our collective. Laura is a 27-year-old living in London and is a money and mindset coach and shares a lot of tips on her social media channels, too.
Being financially motivated
I left school and decided that I wanted to go to drama school rather than going to university. And at the time, it was about £15,000 a year. So I said to myself, “I’m going to get a job and save that money myself.” I didn’t come from a wealthy background, and I knew that I’d have to work hard to find and make that money. So between the ages of 19 and 22, I managed to save £15,000.
And then about three weeks before I was due to start drama school, my best friend said to me “Laura, do you want to come travelling with us?'” And at that moment, I had to choose between going to drama school and going travelling; I decided to go travelling, and it was the best decision I could have ever made!
I spent every single penny that I had, and it was an incredible experience.
When I then came home, I saved up some more money and moved to London with some friends, and by the time I was 27, I had replaced the money that I’d spent travelling and then some. I hit £20,000 in my safe savings.
Now what I learned from this experience is that money is something that can give you freedom.
I realised at that moment, when I had to choose between drama school and travelling, that I didn’t have to ask myself the question of “can I afford it?” It was what one would instead do. And having that money sat there made me realise how powerful of a tool money can be. So I started talking to my friends about money, and I set up a blog. I then started coaching people through their financial journeys to transform their mindset, relationship with money and build wealth. And that is where we are today.
What are Financial Goals?
Essentially, we’re attaching a plan and or a monetary value to our dreams in life to make sure that they become a reality. Because if you don’t have a plan and don’t break it down, that thing stays a dream forever. It’s never going to be able to materialise, and we must think about the numbers side of it and the financial side.
Financial goals are there to improve our financial well-being because money is attached to our mental health.
It is there to help us with our financial confidence and our overall wealth and net worth. It’s also the process of setting up systems that enable us to progress with our finances. It’s not something we get taught much about in school, and as adults, we often have to self educate ourselves.
Let’s talk about why they are essential. I had this firsthand experience because even though the money that I had saved didn’t end up going on my tuition to drama school, it was still the money I had sat there. The reason why I had that money is that I had a goal.
Goals will help you make your dreams become a reality. The reason why this is important is that we live in a capitalist society where things cost money. So, when we envision our lives in a certain way, we always think about travelling, setting up a business, having a family, getting a house, but we have to remember that those things cost us money. As adults, we have to pay for those things, ourselves.
Unfortunately, that money does not appear when we need it. So we have to work towards that. When you have an emotional attachment to a goal, it helps you stay financially motivated. It means that you have something to work towards: I think it can be easy to bumble along, time passes you by, and you wish you had the money for certain things, making you wish you were better at your finances. Financial goals help us prioritise our future and what we’re trying to achieve in life. When you’re thinking about setting up financial goals, you need to be realistic. We don’t want to set ourselves up with a loss.
I love setting big goals and dreaming big, but what you don’t want to do is set yourself up for the first hurdle, so try and work out what is achievable. For example, if you are only able to save £200 per month, what you shouldn’t do is tell yourself that your new goal is to save £1000 a month.
If you don’t physically have that money available after your bills and your spending money, you need to work out what’s achievable.
Ensure your goals are something you want, not what other people have made you think you want. Social media makes us look at other people’s lives and compare our own lives. But really, make sure you hone in on what is important to you. And any goals you set yourself are personal to you: be honest with you with what you want.
Remember that we all have to start somewhere, no matter where we are in our financial journey. We must take small steps and get started because those small steps amount to more significant change over some time.
How to stay financially motivated
When it comes to being motivated with our goals, we need to think about the things in our environment that will make a difference. The first thing to stay motivated is commitment.
You need to make sure that you prioritize yourself and put yourself first when it comes to your finances. You work hard for your money.
Committing one hour a week to sit down with your finances and make a plan to work on your goals will take commitment. It means you’re putting yourself first. If you can spend so many hours at work each week, you can spend one hour on yourself! Smashing through your goals and working out what it is that you want.
You also need to understand your why. I have this a lot with clients: they say, “the reason why I haven’t saved yet is that I don’t know why I’m saving for, I don’t have anything I want to save for.” Then it gets to a certain point, and they wish they had money saved away.
Sometimes the problem when you don’t know what you’re saving for, you don’t know your “why” and you don’t have any emotion attached to it is that you’ll start to put money into a savings account, and you’ll dip back into it. But that teaches you a bad habit because you’re telling your brain that it’s okay to take that money and that money isn’t saved for something else.
So if we start to understand our why behind saving or behind our goals, we can work out what is important to us. When you know your why, you’re more likely to make a decision that’s going to support your future goals.
For example, “I am saving money because I want to be able to quit my full-time job because it makes me miserable. And what makes me happy is making art, and I want to be able to do it every day.” That’s your why.
Get the emotion behind your goals, and it will help you stay on track. Remind yourself as well that motivation doesn’t always pop up out of nowhere. Sometimes you have to take the first step and allow the motivation to follow after.
Stay tuned for a second article from Laura about the different types of goals, how to stay financially motivated and how monthly and micro, and larger goals will help you achieve your financial dreams.