Setting Financial Priorities in 2017

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Happy New Year! I’m Delta Jones-Walker, Financial Advisor* and owner of Atled Financial. It is an honor to pen this inaugural column for the Crusader. And for the rest of 2017, I invite those who have goals of building wealth to join me on this journey to financial fitness.

Although many make them at the start of the year, resolutions are nothing new! They tend to be the same things like losing weight, kicking a bad habit, picking up better habits, etc. I’ve come to notice that financial resolutions are rarely high on the list if at all. This year, let’s do something different using a fresh approach! Start by identifying your financial priorities using these easy steps:

Make a list:

Studies show that writing something down not only encourages clearer thinking, but it makes the goal “come to life.” Be thoughtful about the things that you would like to achieve financially in the year ahead. Is it paying off a credit card bill? Building your credit? Saving a little cash? Investing for the first time?

Whatever is on your list of financial priorities, SET REALISTIC, ACHIEVABLE GOALS. Small wins are better than no wins at all. Note that in some cases, you may only have one goal on your list, and this is fine.

Hold yourself accountable:

Once you have written your list, come up with several methods that will help you stay on track. Sometimes, a partner is needed (spouse, family member or friend) to help you stay true to your goals.

Make an appointment with a financial advisor and share the milestones you are trying to reach. He or she can assist with effective planning, defined action items and most important, accountability. Having someone as your “financial advocate” drastically increases your chances of meeting your financial goals and sometimes exceeding them.

Track your progress:

Select a creative way to track your progress. Maybe it’s a calendar that counts down the days until you have finished paying a debt or a thermometer that rises as you get closer to your savings goal –the more visual, the better. These tools allow you to confirm that you are getting financially healthier.

Reward yourself:

Lastly, take time to give yourself a small pat on the back for your progress. Notice, I said “small.” Treat yourself to a latte or a meal at a favorite restaurant. But remember, going overboard takes you back to square one, so be careful.

I am beyond excited to share more financial tips in the upcoming months. A bevy of topics will be covered including estate planning, starting an investors club, increasing your savings and much more. In the meantime, get started on your list! Ready, set…BUILD YOUR WEALTH!

Connect with Delta Jones-Walker and Atled Financial on Facebook, Twitter: @Atled_Financial and LinkedIn! To schedule a free consultation, call 219-513-3710 or email djwalker@atledfinancial.com and mention this column. Topic ideas for this column are welcome!

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