I’ve never seen anyone any success without first mapping out a course of action. First they find a target, such as getting into a successful career in “X”. Once they decide on a career, then they plan on how to get there, such as the college they need to go to, and break it down further, such as how to finance pursuing that career. Once people graduate and settle down, it seems that the idea of formally planning in your life falls apart. Having a financial mission statement can help you continue on a path in your life to achieve bigger goals, and maximize your happiness in life.
Your mission statement, and your financial mission statement.
It’s no surprise to see that your mission statement and your financial mission statement are almost identical with each other. You want to maximize happiness, by achieving goals.
Laying the foundation for your financial mission statement.
In order to lay down your financial mission statement, Questions to ponder when deciding your mission statement.
1. General life questions:
What do I want to accomplish in my life; what are my priorities?
Who, and what are important in my life?
Do I regret the life that I’ve had so far? How should I change it?
How does my career fit into my life?
Do I want to have a spouse? Do I want to start a family?
How do my wife and kids fit in?
Do I want to donate to charities?
How do people look at me? Do I care? Should I care?
3. Actionable items to pursue your finance goals
Career: Should I go back to school for more training? Brush up my resume? Ask peers and supervisors on how to get better?
Personal finance: Who is the “chief financial officer” of our family? What does that job entail? Should
we have monthly meetings on how to run the budget? What do we want as far as the “big goals” in our lives? What about our 401k, and our retirement?
Personal life: What do I want to do in my life that would make me happy? Get involved in a hobby? Get involved in a social club? Ride motorcycles with my friends? Go to church?
What your mission statement might look like.
Here are a couple examples of mission statements that one may decide on.
I want to to raise a family with good moral values. I want them to learn that money isn’t everything, that it has it’s good and bad sides. I also want to instill a sense of helping and giving to charity is how we should live our lives.
I want to pursue a well paid career as an insurance agent. I want my family to enjoy life, including going on vacations, and not have to sweat the little things. I want my kids to know that college will be paid for when they are old enough to go.
A mission statement should help you reach personal fulfillment.
I remember a few years back as a single guy, doing nothing but working overtime and fixing up on my house. That was all I did for several years. A co-worker one day asked me if I had a million dollars, and could only spend it on fun things, what would I do. I responded “I would…uh…uh”. I always thought if I had a million dollars, I would pay off my house and put money away in investments. What would I do for fun? I struggled to come up with anything to do for fun. I had trained myself to be a worker bee so completely that I didn’t notice that time was slipping by in my life. It wasn’t all that long before I cut out my overtime, and started a more active dating life, and found my wife.
However you choose to write your mission statement is of course up to you. Just remember to set a time to revisit your mission statement, to keep yourself on track with your life’s goals, and to also change your mission statement as you need.