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First Step To Your Journey To Millions: Setting Financial Goals

by Edel

“Do you know where you’re going to?
Do you like the things that life is showing you?
Do you know?”

-Diana Ross

Setting Financial GoalsEssential to every journey is a destination. Ask any seasoned traveller and he/she will probably tell you how important it is to know exactly where you want to be at very specific points in time.

You set your dream destination and when you want to be there, to make your experience worthwhile.

You do this instead of walking aimlessly, wasting your precious time.

Now, the same is true for your Journey To Millions.

You have to know exactly where you want to be at very specific points in time.

You set your targets and when you want to achieve them.

So before we begin talking about budgeting, saving, investing, and all those stuff, let us first pin down your desired destination.

Be honest with yourself. Considering your current age, level of education, earning ability, values, and aspirations, let me ask you, “Where do you want to go?”

Sometimes, it’s the same as asking “What dreams do you have for yourself and your loved ones?”

Usual answers to these questions are:

  • “I want to buy my own house.”
  • “I want to buy my own car.”
  • “I want to have my dream wedding.”
  • “I want to send my kids to college.”
  • “I want to travel the world.”
  • “I want to retire early.”
  • “I want to retire rich.”
  • “I want to be a millionaire.”

Good answers, right?

Well, the experts say, NOT REALLY.

As what I have mentioned in the first paragraph of this article, it is equally important to identify when we wish to reach our destination, or in other words, we have to set a specific time/date for achieving our goals.

Not only that, experts say that the more detail we include in describing our goals, the better.

In The Universal Book of Success and Achievement, Brian Tracy, a globally renowned personal development coach, talked about the Law of Mental Equivalency. This law says that “in order for you to achieve success in any area, you must have a clear image of that success in your mind — a mental picture of your idea of success.”

The rule above applies to your financial goals.

Based on your personal preferences, you have to set a clear image of how your financial goals should look like, feel like, taste like, smell like, etc..

So, instead of just saying “I want to buy my own house,” you can say “By the last quarter of 2014, I am buying a house worth P2,000,000, with 3 bedrooms and 2 toilets & bathrooms, located at XYZ Subdivision in ABC City.”

Get the idea?

If not, then here are some more examples of clear and specific financial goals:

  • At the age of 28, I am getting married on July 10, 2015, at St. Therese of the Child Jesus Church, UPLB, with only 50 very close friends and family, spending less than P300,000.
  • By January 2014, I am visiting my friend in Thailand and be touring 8 enchanting spots for 4 days, with a pocket money of at least P50,000.
  • By the end of the year 2014, I am increasing my net worth with at least P500,000 in savings and investments.
“Saving money for the sake of saving money?
Yuck!!! That’s kinda boring.”

-Dave Ramsey

Why should you set financial goals?

According to Stever Robbins, the Get-It-Done-Guy at QuickandDirtyTips.com, the goals that you have just read above are called Outcome Goals. Outcome Goals are said to inspire us so much that they provide us all kinds of motivation.

I’m sure, it would be a lot easier for you to save money for a specific house that you love, instead of just saving money for the sake of saving money.

Having no financial goals while saving can make you feel so lazy, you wouldn’t even bother saving at all.

So, from now on, make sure that you clearly set your financial goals. Try your best to be as specific as possible. This will not only inspire you but also make you think real hard about what dreams you really want to spend your precious time and money on.

Now that you have an idea of how best to express your financial goals, it is time for you to explore common goals that most of us aspire for. See if you have thought of what others have been dreaming of.

Meet Short, Medium, and Long Term Financial Goals

According to Your Money: A Guide To Reaching Your Financial Goals by FINRA Investor Education Foundation, financial goals can be categorized into three:

Short-term financial goals – expenses you anticipate in one to five years;

Medium-term financial goals – expenses you anticipate in six to ten years;

Long-term financial goals – expenses you anticipate in more than ten years.

Short-term financial goals may include the following:

  • Buying a car
  • Making a down payment to a home
  • Taking a vacation
  • Returning to school for extra education and degrees
  • Getting married
  • Establishing your own business
  • Paying off credit cards, and other debts

Medium-term financial goals may include the following:

  • Paying for children’s education
  • Buying a larger home
  • Buying a vacation home
  • Buying a recreational vehicle
  • Traveling to a special destination

Long-term financial goals may include the following:

  • Living comfortably during retirement
  • Affording travel and hobbies
  • Continuing to support your children
  • Financial security for long-term health care
  • Providing an inheritance for your heirs
  • Creating a legacy

The three categories of financial goals based on time horizon gives you an idea that different goals have different deadlines. Largely dependent on your age, you can pretty much estimate how much time you still have to prepare for your own goals. The more time you have, the better. But don’t think that just because you’re still young, you are exempt from the goal setting task. Remember, the earlier you begin envisioning and setting your dreams, the faster you will get to achieve them!

Now, it is not enough to just “think” about your financial goals. Experts say, you also ought to “write” them.

According to Elizabeth Carlassare, the Money Girl at QuickandDirtyTips.com, “writing down your goals radically increases your chances of achieving them.” She says that writing down your goals gives you the road map you need to drive your own destiny.

Surprisingly, a vast majority chooses not to write their goals. No wonder why there are only very few people who are outstandingly satisfied with their financial achievements. Please don’t be one of them (those who fail to think, write, and achieve goals).

Warning for married people

If you are married, please make sure that you set your goals with your partner. It’s not bad to have plans of your own, but when you have a partner to consider, it is best that you dream together. Ultimately, please be open about your expectations, of how you wish to live your life now and in the future as a happy couple. You wouldn’t want your partner to go left when you actually want the both of you to go right, right? LOL.

Between me and Elvin, I am more of the planner type. There is a natural desire in my heart to keep things in order today, in preparation for a better tomorrow. So, most of the time, I initiate our goal setting sessions.

We have goal set for so many times in the past years and we continue to goal set every so often. Our priorities change every now and then so we adjust accordingly. We brainstorm a lot and we feel so good about it because we almost always end up with the most motivating goals that keep us really excited about the life ahead of us.

We also get to enjoy a feeling of peace, knowing that our needs, wants, and ideals are given appropriate attention. We feel that everyday, we are walking closer to our dreams.

Open your eyes!

If you already see the magic in setting your financial goals and how it can help you boost your Journey To Millions, I invite you to take a second and leave a comment below with one of your very own financial goals. The more details, the better!

Who knows? Your personally crafted financial goal might inspire others to think, write, and achieve goals too.

Also, do you know someone who will find this topic just as interesting as you?

Please take a second and share it with them. It’s always fun to dream together!

Until my next post.



P.S. Remember to aim high, but be realistic.


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Image taken from findingstrong.com

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Joshua May 8, 2013 at 8:07 am

Thank you for sharing this Edel. It’s just well said. I realized that I’m working so hard but for what? I have no idea. I didn’t set specific goals that’s why I end up working hard but I’m not really achieving anything. I just react and respond to what happens around me. Today, I should set my goals and get specific. This is the first step and I won’t proceed to the next without setting my goals first.


Edel Ramilo-Peria May 8, 2013 at 11:16 am

Hi, Joshua! Thank you so much for appreciating this post and for sharing your thoughts. How’s your goal setting so far? I hope you’re having an awesome time envisioning your future.


Joshua At Home Pinoy May 17, 2013 at 10:40 am

I feel better now I have goals to direct my efforts. Before, I easily get distracted and pursue one thing and another. Right now, I’m feeling a sense of direction and every step I take, I always feel that I’m getting closer. Thank you Edel!


Louren March 25, 2016 at 6:45 pm

Indeed! Goals direct efforts to have a laser-like focus on what you are doing. Learn to say no to other things far from the direction you want to tackle and have the discipline to keep the consistency.


tatay_ni_Ash July 24, 2013 at 2:23 am

Hi Edel, I’d like to earn millions by – first, spending less than I earn and investing the difference; second, get the income and re-invest for compounded growth; and third, repeating the above steps until I reach financial freedom.

I am currently invested in equity funds. My total investment has grown to about 27% in 13 months now. The profit is huge enough to buy a franchise of a food cart business. Will be taking the profit and re-invest it so I can diversify my investments. I have never done anything like this in my whole 35 years and so now I am stepping up to get to the stage that I wanna be at the financial area of my life. I am also into investing in the stock market but suffered a huge “paper loss” during the recent market correction. I have learned my lessons from that correction and I will use these as tools to become a better “investor” along the way. Ask about my goal? — to be financially free 10 years from now.

Keep on sharing.


Edel Ramilo-Peria July 24, 2013 at 6:03 pm

Hello po, Tatay ni Ash! :-)

It’s sooo great to see your comment po! Your goal is very inspiring and challenging at the same time. May your efforts pay off soon! :-)

I personally hope that you get to choose a franchise business that suits your personality and values in life. May it bring you financial blessing and personal satisfaction. :-)

More power po and welcome to our Journey To Millions! :-)


aris August 15, 2013 at 11:26 am

Thanks po sa advice very helpful lalo na sa nagstart pa lang, God bless po sa inyo


Edel Ramilo-Peria August 15, 2013 at 6:32 pm

Hi, Aris! :-)

Thank you so much for the feedback! :-)

We really appreciate it! :-)

God bless din po! :-)


Lecerf September 17, 2013 at 9:30 am

Hi, i’m 24 yrs old and not earning big..but i want to start earning.. for now my priority is to earn for studying abroad..in UK preferably as my stepping stone in working there..but i’m also thinking to invest in long term..even in small amount of money..
Is investing in variable insurance ok? And in Philippine stock market? I still don’t have any idea in investing.. thanks much for future feedback:)


Elvin Peria September 18, 2013 at 7:58 am

Hi Lecerf,

In my opinion, investing in variable insurance is best for those people with dependents who does not have time to learn how to invest in the stock market. If the person has the time to study how the stock market works, then buying term insurance and investing the difference is the better option.

But before we talk about insurance and investments, be sure to have clear goals and emergency fund first.


Billy November 9, 2015 at 3:09 pm

Thank you for this well-written article Edel. Me and my wife is newly wed and preparing for the “battle in life”. We’re doing the same thing. Reading article like this from other couple’s perspective is a really good encouragement and inspiration to work more on our goals.

Keep inspiring others! God bless!


Elvin November 9, 2015 at 8:42 pm

Hi, Billy

Thank you for appreciating Edel’s post. I am also glad to virtually meet another couple hooked into personal finance. Have fun learning. 😁


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