This article on Medium.com proposes 5 steps that you should do each day to plan what you want to accomplish for that day. I agree with it wholeheartedly. In order to be successful, however you define your own success, you need to have a plan for each day and determine how and when you plan to accomplish your daily goals.
Especially for People On Their Own
I believe a Daily Plan is especially important for those of us who are on their own, meaning those who don’t go to a steady job every working day. If you have a job and work for someone else, perhaps your day is planned for you and your only plan is to complete the tasks provided to you. However, if you are on your own in any capacity, Daily Planning is a must. If you are on your own, there will be many distractions that will be more fun or interesting than what you really need to accomplish on any given day. I speak from experience on this matter.
Sense of Accomplishment
Your goal every day should be that at the end of each day you will have accomplished part or all of what you set out to accomplish at the start of the day. If so, you should feel good about yourself. What if you get to the end of the day and you got done part of what you hoped to but not all of it, and you are angry with yourself for not getting it all done? Perhaps you have set too high of a goal for yourself. Maybe there isn’t enough time in the day for you to get done all that you desire. If so, for tomorrow and future days, set more realistic goals. You want to feel that you move the pile forward every day, even just a little bit, and you should give yourself a pat on the back for having done so, even if you perhaps moved that pile only 3 inches instead of the 6 inches you had hoped to.
What does all of this touchy-feely babble have to do with financial planning or investment management? Well, the second word in financial planning is “planning”. Whether you plan for your entire financial life and well being or whether you plan just for what you hope to accomplish today, the planning element is an essential part of the process. Both Ben Franklin and John Wooden, the Wizard of Westwood, said some version of, “Failing to plan is planning to fail.” Essential advice from two different American sages!