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2022 financial goals: Your mid-year check-in
The year may be half over, but there’s still plenty of time to work toward your 2022 financial goals. There’s also time to change direction and start working toward something new.
Believe it or not, 2022 is half over—and whether you’re spending your summer vacationing with your family, going back to the office or figuring out how to deal with inflation, it’s worth squeezing in a few minutes to check in with your 2022 financial goals.
For some of you, this process will feel extremely familiar—especially if you set 2022 financial resolutions with us back in January and followed our February financial resolution check-in. You already know how you’re doing, what you want to do next and how to overcome some of the obstacles that might get in the way.
For everyone else, let’s just say that there’s still time. Maybe you’re further behind on your financial goals than you thought you would be, when you set them back in January—or maybe you didn’t set any goals at all. Either way, there’s still plenty of opportunity to make positive financial decisions.
There’s even still time to set a few 2022 financial resolutions—and achieve them!
“There’s no reason why a resolution has to be set on January 1st,” explains Jim Wang, founder of WalletHacks. “You can set a new resolution today or tomorrow.”
Here’s how to get started:
In this article:
Review your goals
If you already have your 2022 financial resolutions in place, it’s time to review your progress.
“Since you’re at the mid-year point, you should be close to halfway towards your financial goals,” says Steffa Mantilla, founder of Money Tamer and Certified Financial Education Instructor (CFEI). “If you aren’t at the halfway point, that’s completely fine—but take the time to assess why you’ve fallen short.”
There are many reasons why you could be less than halfway towards your 2022 financial goals. You might have experienced an unexpected job loss or medical emergency, for example. You might have decided to divert some of your discretionary income towards another financial priority, such as a long-postponed vacation or a family reunion. Even if you made it through the first half of 2022 without any major unanticipated expenses, you might have had trouble balancing your budget against the rising costs of inflation.
“Sometimes goals take longer to achieve through no fault of your own, and that’s all right,” Mantilla explains. “Instead of getting discouraged, focus on the progress you have made and celebrate those wins.”
You may also find yourself falling behind on your 2022 financial goals for reasons that have less to do with unexpected expenses and more to do with a lack of positive action. “If you’ve been slacking,” says Mantilla, “figure out what it might take to get back on track.”
This also goes for those of you who haven’t set your 2022 financial resolutions. Figure out where you want to be at the end of the year, and then ask yourself what it might take to get there. “Sometimes you can still reach your financial goals if you take on an extra job or work overtime,” Mantilla advises.
“There’s no reason why a resolution has to be set on January 1st. You can set a new resolution today or tomorrow.”—Jim Wang, founder of WalletHacks
Review your budget
In addition to reviewing your 2022 financial goals, it’s also important to review your budget.
“If there’s ever been a year that requires a mid-year checkup on your budget, it’s 2022,” explains Matt Schulz, Chief Credit Analyst at LendingTree. “Lots of those assumptions that you made about expenses at the first of the year have probably been blown out of the water by inflation, so it is important to tweak your budget to account for higher costs.”
Even if you don’t have a budget, it’s still a good idea to sit down with your bank and credit card statements and take a close look at where your money is going. “You can’t make a meaningful plan to attack debt or grow savings without understanding exactly how much money is going in and out of your household each month,” says Schulz. “There’s a good chance that at least one of those two parts of the equation has changed significantly this year.”
Once you know how much money you’re spending on groceries, gas and other day-to-day expenses—and whether those numbers are, as the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics suggests, 8.3% higher than they were last year—you can start making decisions that can help you balance your budget and put more money towards your financial goals.
You can also use this information to take a more realistic look at your 2022 financial resolutions—and ask yourself which resolutions are still achievable. “If you need to, remove the goals that you likely won’t reach this year and put them on the list for next year,” Mantilla advises.
Take positive action
Once you know what you want to achieve and how it fits into your overall budget, it’s time to start taking action. Focus on positive actions over negative ones—that is, focus on the kinds of actions and improvements that are more likely to add to your life than take away from it. That way, you’ll be more likely to stick with the actions long-term.
In some cases, you’ll know what actions are likely to have the biggest results. If you’re overspending, for example, you might want to unsubscribe to a few streaming services and take advantage of no-cost entertainment options at your local library (or around town — summer is a golden season for free concerts, festivals, outdoor movie screenings and more). Unsubscribing may feel like a negative, but after a week or two, it’ll be easy to feel positive about your decision — you might not even notice what you’re missing.
In other cases, you may want to do some research into which actions could have the biggest positive impact—because you might uncover a few ideas you hadn’t previously considered, such as lowering your credit card interest rates so you can pay off your debt more quickly.
“Calling your card issuer and asking them for a lower interest rate on your primary credit card can be a great idea,” explains Schulz. “About 70% of those who asked for that in the past year got their way, and the average reduction was 7 percentage points, which is a big deal.”
Make a non-financial resolution
Want one more tip to help you achieve your 2022 financial goals? Make a non-financial resolution. Deciding to improve another area of your life—even if the improvement has nothing to do with money—can give you the motivation you need to tackle some of your more difficult financial challenges.
Plus, you’ll get all of the benefits that come with achieving your non-financial goal.
What kind of non-financial resolution should you make? Wang suggests focusing on small changes that have big impacts. “Maybe it’s getting to bed 15 minutes earlier. Maybe it’s preparing lunch at home one day a week. Maybe it’s something as simple as going for a ten-minute walk each day to stretch your legs and refresh your mind.”
Schulz also believes in the importance of refreshing your mind. “It’s so easy to doom-scroll the day away, but it is so important for your mental health that you avoid that as much as possible. When the headlines get to be too much, or your stress level about your job or your emergency fund or your retirement account get to be too overwhelming, step away. Find something healthy and relaxing to take you away from that intensity.”
The best non-financial resolutions not only relax and refresh, but also give you the confidence to make other positive changes in your life—whether you want to work toward one of the financial goals that you set at the beginning of 2022, or whether you want to set a new financial resolution.
“Start building something small that you can be proud of in December,” says Wang. That way, you’ll be ready to celebrate everything you’ve done in 2022—and set new financial resolutions for 2023.
About Nicole Dieker
Nicole Dieker has been a full-time freelance writer since 2012, with a focus on personal finance and habit formation. In addition to Haven Life, her work regularly appears at Lifehacker, Bankrate, CreditCards.com, and Vox. Dieker spent five years as a writer and editor for The Billfold, a personal finance blog where people had honest conversations about money, and is the author of Frugal and the Beast: And Other Financial Fairy Tales.Read more by Nicole Dieker
Our editorial policy
Haven Life is a customer-centric life insurance agency that’s backed and wholly owned by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual). We believe navigating decisions about life insurance, your personal finances and overall wellness can be refreshingly simple.
Our editorial policy
Haven Life is a customer centric life insurance agency that’s backed and wholly owned by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual). We believe navigating decisions about life insurance, your personal finances and overall wellness can be refreshingly simple.
Our content is created for educational purposes only. Haven Life does not endorse the companies, products, services or strategies discussed here, but we hope they can make your life a little less hard if they are a fit for your situation.
Haven Life is not authorized to give tax, legal or investment advice. This material is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for tax, legal, or investment advice. Individuals are encouraged to seed advice from their own tax or legal counsel.
Haven Term is a Term Life Insurance Policy (DTC and ICC17DTC in certain states, including NC) issued by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual), Springfield, MA 01111-0001 and offered exclusively through Haven Life Insurance Agency, LLC. In NY, Haven Term is DTC-NY 1017. In CA, Haven Term is DTC-CA 042017. Haven Term Simplified is a Simplified Issue Term Life Insurance Policy (ICC19PCM-SI 0819 in certain states, including NC) issued by the C.M. Life Insurance Company, Enfield, CT 06082. Policy and rider form numbers and features may vary by state and may not be available in all states. Our Agency license number in California is OK71922 and in Arkansas 100139527.
MassMutual is rated by A.M. Best Company as A++ (Superior; Top category of 15). The rating is as of Aril 1, 2020 and is subject to change. MassMutual has received different ratings from other rating agencies.
Haven Life Plus (Plus) is the marketing name for the Plus rider, which is included as part of the Haven Term policy and offers access to additional services and benefits at no cost or at a discount. The rider is not available in every state and is subject to change at any time. Neither Haven Life nor MassMutual are responsible for the provision of the benefits and services made accessible under the Plus Rider, which are provided by third party vendors (partners). For more information about Haven Life Plus, please visit: https://havenlife.com/plus
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