How many times have you made New Year’s resolutions only to lose motivation a few weeks later? We’ve all been there. This year if you put some up-front strategy into your goal-setting process you can potentially set yourself up for longer-term success.
Two areas are ripe for goals and resolutions in 2018 are wealth and health. January is a good time to see both your financial professional and physician for checkups. Read on to learn how to gather your information and questions.
Gather financial information and questions
Start by completing the 12 Planning Points to Review checklist from Transamerica. This worksheet helps you track changes over the past year and asks questions about your current investments, goals, tax situation, retirement contributions, and other common financial planning topics. Once you’ve worked through it, you can create your own set of topics for your financial professional.
- Are my investments in the right allocation for me?
- I’ve used the Transamerica Retireometer.
- What do you think of the results?Are my investments balanced?
- What is a good debt ratio for someone of my life stage?
- Are there any estate planning strategies I should consider like a trust?
- Do I have the right mix of life, health, long-term care, auto, and other insurance types?
Review your health and compile questions
In addition to reviewing your financial situation, take stock of your health over the past year. Collect questions you might have about any new or existing problems. You can also use these calculators and checklists. Keep in mind these tools are not a substitute for seeing your doctor. You can use them to help assemble questions you might have about results: cancer risks and prevention, heart attack calculator, and the diabetes risk test. Using this information, prioritize your health questions.
- What are your recommendations for physical exercise, smoking, sleep, and diet?
- Is my blood pressure in a healthy range? If not, how do I get it there?
- What are my heart attack, diabetes, and stroke risks?
- Are my current medications still the best ones for my conditions?
- Ask any questions about “embarrassing” health issues like abnormal bowel movements, libido, incontinence, sexually transmitted infections, etc. Doctors have heard and seen it all and want to help you understand all of your health issues.
Create your 2018 goals and resolutions
Using your checkup information, create a goal tracker — a physical notebook, Microsoft Excel spreadsheet, or an app. A goal should be a bit of a stretch, measurable, and one that can be broken down into manageable pieces with set deadlines.
Remember to revisit your goals frequently to ensure you’re on track for success. You can adjust them if they’re not working for your current lifestyle. Just be sure the goals remain true to your overall strategies. With some planning, mindfulness, and continuous realignments, you can keep your New Year’s resolutions.
What questions do you ask your financial professional and doctor?
Neither Transamerica nor its agents or representatives may provide tax, investment or legal advice. Anyone to whom this material is promoted, marketed, or recommended should consult with and rely on their own independent tax and legal advisors and financial professional regarding their particular situation and the concepts presented herein.
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