Budget tip: consistency is key
If I could write and publish blog posts for JD Financial in my head, there would be multiple coming out every week. Lucky for you, it takes me actually having a few minutes to sit down and do it! However, when I think about what I have to offer the world as it relates to finance, the real substance is what I am doing with my clients consistently, month after month. A blog post comes and goes; it rarely changes lives in any significant sense of the word. So I'm ok with it.
I have been thinking about what has worked and what hasn't worked with my clients, both past and present. I have noticed that after I meet with someone for a one-time consultation and deep-dive, they are thrilled. They feel happy, motivated, understood, and filled with knowledge and information for their next steps. I have even started sending written summaries with an analysis of our time together. However, I have also noticed that it is really easy for the same people to drift away from their goals after awhile because they don't have the monthly reminders and involvement to keep moving forward.
This is totally understandable. While finance may be at the forefront of my mind because of my job, there are hundreds of other priorities swirling around in their heads at any given time. And while there are many analogies that I could go with, I will use the one I have on my website where I describe my services. Let's say someone comes in and helps you do a deep clean in your house. The feeling is wonderful. You feel like a weight has been lifted--like you can breath. You feel motivated to keep it up. Things make sense. But then, the days go on and life happens. It slowly (or very quickly) gets back to its original state.
By contrast, let's say that someone is coming in monthly to help you clean up, while also helping you establish habits and routines to make sure that it doesn't get messy again in between the times we meet. After six months + of consistency and habit-forming, I can image that the impact is far more long-lasting and ultimately useful.
Really finding your rhythm financially takes time and consistency. I know that the clients I work with regularly would tell you the same thing. I have noticed that 6 months is a really key marker to their confidence and skills.
How about you? Try sticking with one good financial habit (like a weekly sit down to examine your banking transactions) for the next few months and see how it works.