Financial Planner


Checklist: Goal-Setting

Things to do this weekend with your money: Go beyond New Year’s resolutions and think about what you want to accomplish in life. Some of these goals will be financial, some not, but knowing where you’re headed will help you get there.

* Today: Think about what you would like your life to be like next year, in five years, in 20 years, and at the end of your life. Brainstorm with your partner or other family members who might be involved. Write down everything, no matter how farfetched it might seem, as long as it’s a goal you would like to accomplish.

* Saturday: Spend some time sorting and prioritizing your goals. You may find that some are contradictory--most of us can’t expect to both retire early and take annual European vacations, for example. Discover what’s most important to you and build a timeline, putting your cherished goals into short-term, intermediate-term and long-term categories.


* Sunday: Many of your goals are likely to have a financial angle. Changing careers, for example, might require more education or a lower income while you get established; a comfortable retirement requires saving and investing. Consider using personal finance software or a session with a financial planner to set up a plan to get you to your goals. For more information on selecting a planner, visit