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WHEN YOU SIT
There's nothing wrong with shooting for top financial accomplishments, but if you make them too difficult to achieve, you'll be quick to give up.
"Regardless of the goal, it's important to focus on areas that you have the power to change, rather than allowing yourself to become derailed by factors that may be out
Here's what Salmeron and other experts advise to help you hit your targets.
ASSESS YOUR SITUATION
"Start with the basics," Salmeron said. "Get on top of where your money goes, and it will be easier to plan ahead. At a minimum, you will feel relieved and more in control."
The major goal that most people have is attaining financial independence, said Mark McClanahan, a Dallas certified financial planner.
To get there, he said, ask yourself: "What does your balance sheet look like, what types of assets do you have, if any? Can you begin investing or saving money from your income?"
DIVIDE YOUR GOALS
"It's great if you've got some goals and you work toward them financially, but you need to set your short- and long-term goals so that you can put an action plan to each of them or, at the very least, prioritize them so you're acting on them accordingly," said Todd Mark, a consumer credit expert. "Short-term goals are 12 months and sooner. Interim goals are something in the next two to five years, and long-term goals--retirement could be 10 years away, 20 years away, 30 years away, that's a long-term goal."
"Often as folks prioritize their short- and long-term goals--both needs and wants--the time sensitivity or urgency may force rank the goals in an order that isn't really prioritized," Mark said.
He cited an example:
Say someone has three short-term goals for 2013: pay off the holiday debt, replace a broken backyard fence and take a family trip during spring break.