It can be difficult to maintain a sense of serenity about your financial situation. Just when it felt like the future had some structure and clarity, there are suddenly more questions than answers for many of us.

Although planning for the future is vital, practising mindfulness with your finances will help you focus on what you can control right now. Remember, planning is all about you and your objectives, so writing them down, keeping track of your progress, and consistently working towards them is the only benchmark that matters.

Even in the best of circumstances, planning can be a hassle. In reality, planning is essentially about financial mindfulness: focusing on what you can control and being conscious of your everyday financial actions and decisions. It can also mean not blaming yourself for past financial blunders and not punishing yourself if you don’t accomplish your goals. Financial mindfulness lays the foundation for your future – in whatever form it takes!

When confronted with events beyond your control, mindfulness is very vital. You must first determine what is truly within your sphere of influence, and then spend your attention and energy on enhancing it. Outside pressures such as stock market changes or economic recessions might be unsettling, but experts constantly advise against reacting too quickly to volatility or news cycles. While it’s natural to feel panicked in instances like these, it’s critical to exercise patience and focus while making investing selections.

Your strategy provides the framework for making such decisions, allowing you to identify what is absolutely necessary to achieve your savings objectives and what you can do without. Financial mindfulness can also entail taking stock of what you really need right now versus what you can live without — change is inevitable, and our financial plans can always adapt to changing circumstances.

It’s worthwhile to review your fixed and variable expenses on a regular basis. What have you bought on impulse in the previous month? Are there any recurring payments for items that you no longer use? Is the current interest rate on your savings account too low? Are there any more cost-effective options for your existing expenses?

If you’re unsure about your future plans, now is a good moment to start putting money aside from your current budget.

Prepare to keep focused on your own personal finance goals, rather than what the markets are doing or how others define success. The most crucial aspect of a plan, though, is that it is yours and no one else’s — it is for you, your life, and your future. The plan belongs to you, not to a stock exchange, your bank, or your financial advisor.

 

Disclaimer: This article is not intended as legal, financial or investment advice and should not be construed or relied on as such. Before making any commitment of a legal or financial nature you should seek advice from a qualified and registered Australian legal practitioner or financial or investment advisor.