Last week, I (Dawn) was reading a post at my favorite personal finance blog The Simple Dollar authored by Trent Hamm. The post is called “Out with the Old, In With The New: Create a Five Year Sketch,” and I thought the ideas would be a good complement to our previous discussion on setting your financial goals.


The post is the second in a series about how to prepare for a great 2011. It emphasizes that looking ahead at the next five years and deciding now how you want your life to look can really help you decide what needs to be done today to make that happen. But make sure to be realistic (we would say it’s okay to dream big, but set realistic/obtainable goals). And this isn’t just about your financials. Take a look at your life as a whole and think about the following (quoted from The Simple Dollar):


“What will your job be like?
What will your family be like?
What will your physical appearance be like?
What will your home be like?
What will a typical day be like?
What will you be looking forward to?
What will your social circle look like?”


As we talked about in our financial goals post, having your goals planned out and written down where the can be reviewed can really go a long way to help you achieve what you set out to do. That way, you can always go back to track your progress and decide what needs to be done next. So, even if in five years you haven’t reached every goal you set for yourself, you’ll definitely be much better off than you would if you hadn’t thought about your goals at all. Plus, it can be fun to think about all the possibilities the future can hold.