This is a sponsored post for SheSpeaks & Prudential. All opinions & stories are 100% my own.
So, I’m curious…Have you started thinking about your retirement? Do you have any financial goals in place that will set you up for a solid life beyond work? Whether you are shaking your head up and down or side to side, it’s never too late to start planning for retirement.
This is the 3rd post in my #OwnMyFuture series and it’s no surprise that this topic has become one of my passion projects. Because let’s be very real…us girls on the go, those of us hustling to make our dreams come true, those of us working 18 hour days so that we can build a life we want to actually be living…we have to also be creating and planning the life we want for our retirement years. Because the chances of someone helping us to get there (a company-matched 401K, for example) are probably slim. If you are a creative entrepreneur or if you own your own business, you have to be the one to make these plans and put these plans into action.
My first post in this series was all about Money Saving Tips for Creative Entrepreneurs. My second post was all about 3 Lies You Tell Yourself About Saving for Retirement and now this post is going to focus on tips on how to plan for retirement.
Each of our retirements is going to look different. I don’t know that I’ll actually ever fully retire. I have way too many things I want to do in life to consider just “resting.” I would drive myself batty if my day-to-day looked like chai tea lattes and reading books. While that sounds like a lovely escape for about a week, I do not actually see myself living that as a lifestyle.
My retirement looks like this: a small farm with a garden, an active wedding venue, retreats for creatives and pop-up dinners for the community with traveling/visiting chefs. There’s a lot more to that picture but that gives you the gist. I want to raise animals and grow my own food. I want to continue teaching creative entrepreneurs how to build the lives they want to live. I want to break bread with my friends and community.
But I can’t do any of that unless I create that plan to get there. I need to create a roadmap that is going to support those dreams and goals. And that plan has to start right now – not in 5-10 years.
TIP 1: Budget.
To start planning for your future, you need to begin with looking at your budget (or actually creating a budget if you don’t have one). Look at what is coming in each month and what is going out each month. I created a spreadsheet to track my expenses and my revenues. I want to see what is coming in and what is going out and I want to know exactly what day, each month, those items are happening. I set a goal for myself each month for the revenues I want to see depositing into my bank accounts. Setting this up also allowed me to see how much I could budget for savings – for my future.
TIP 2: Reduce your debts.
My husband and I have been pretty good at managing what our credit cards hold. Our goal each month is to pay off our credit cards. But we haven’t always been this way. It took us a while to figure out that even though there was room on a credit card to add that fancy new toy, that we didn’t actually need that fancy new toy. If your credit cards have balances on them, try and send some extra money to them each month to reduce that debt as quickly as you can. I totally get it. That can be daunting when you don’t have much left-over each month, but really analyze your spending and see what you can cut back on so that money can go towards paying off your debts vs buying that cup of coffee that you buy every morning on your way to work.
TIP 3: Set up Retirement Accounts.
If you haven’t spoken to a Financial Professional about how to actually save for your future (how much money you will need for your future lifestyle, how much money you will need in an emergency account, etc.), then you need to make this a priority. While opening up a savings account is a great start, it is probably not going to provide you enough for your future. Speaking to a Financial Professional will allow you to fully realize your savings and investing options. Prudential Financial offers complimentary consultations to help you create a savings plan that works for you. Their advice and guidance will allow you to know that your retirement will be smartly planned. Fill out this form to get started with a complimentary introductory meeting with a Prudential financial professional, like the one I had!
So, are you ready to start planning for your retirement? #OwnMyFuture
(Where I Party)