If you had to go for a holiday, do you just pick up your plans & suddenly leave, reach the airport & decide the destination? Well, in most cases this is not possible. No matter how exciting such a life sounds, it’s not a balanced way to live & spend your time or money. One has to pre plan things according to work schedules, occasions & also budgets. Almost everything in life requires planning. From a simple task in the day or major decisions, planning & scheduling is quite important.
Despite this, a lot of people are ignorant when it comes to financial planning in UAE.
Planning is mainly defined as the process of making plans. And yes, it is much more than just doodling on your planner notebook. It actually requires you to follow through.
In my opinion, the starting point for financial planning is setting your financial goals.
You may refer to Most Effective Five Steps Financial Planning Process to understand this better
What Are Financial Goals?
A financial goal simply put is your aspirations from money or what you want to achieve through your money. These goals can be short-term or long-term. For example, saving up $1,000 is a short-term goal, while investing for retirement is a long-term financial goal. Your goals should give you focus and keep you accountable, no matter how long they take to make happen!
Financial goals will change the way you look at money. Without goals, you may be spending money on everything you wish for. With goals, you will see how every decision you make today impacts your overall financial health
Types of financial goals
If you ask any financial advisor in UAE, they will tell you that financial goals can be put into three categories.
- Essential goals: Goals that you must achieve else your day-to-day life gets impacted. The essential financial goals in UAE would be having a place to live, a meal for the family, etc.
- Important goals: Once you have taken care of your essential goals, you have to look for important goals. It could be saving for retirement or savings for a child’s education, etc.
- Aspirational goals: These are goals that are beyond your current reach but something you want to achieve if given an opportunity. It could start a new business or go on a foreign vacation with your family.
You can also divide goals into short, mid, and long-term goals. Every person’s life is different, and hence the financial goals in each category will differ.
Your financial goals will also depend on your income. For example, if your income is low, you may focus more on essential financial goals only. As your income increases, you can think about important and aspirational goals. On the other hand, if you have sufficient funds after fulfilling your essential goals, you can set up a process to secure essential and important goals and plan for aspirational goals also.
You can consult any financial advisor in UAE, and they will evaluate your financial situation and accordingly set your financial goals.
However, there are a few important things to keep in mind while setting your financial goals:-
- Make them measurable: For example, You look at your budget and your debt and decide you want to pay $15,000 toward your debt. That’s a measurable goal!
- Don’t create goals that are too extreme. Start small. Setting goals that are more doable for your personal circumstances — even if they feel small, like saving $50 per month are more sustainable.
- Do it for yourself. It’s easy to set generic goals or copy someone else’s goals. But unless your goals are your own, you won’t be motivated enough to achieve them.
- Be prepared for uncertainties. Successfully paying your credit card debt & then facing an emergency can throw you off your goals. So it’s important to stay motivated and not give up. One simple way to do this is to set up an emergency fund.
To sum things up
I have always believed, financial goals have the ability to drive you, your habits, your lifestyle. When you’re intentional with every dollar you have, every dollar will stretch further. That means you get to do more of the stuff that you want to do & on your terms.
But it all starts with creating the goal. That leads you to create a strategy & start making small but progressive shifts.
If you are looking for guidance on setting your financial goals in Dubai, feel free to connect with me.