Stick to the plan
Congratulations to the respondents who have financial goals – taking time to plan to save is an important first step. And those who write their goals down could well deserve an extra pat on the back.
This is because putting a pen and paper (or an electronic memo) to use may actually help you to stick to your financial plans. The eZonomics article When reminders can make you rich cites research from the United States called Getting to the Top of Mind: How Reminders Increase Saving. The respected academics found that reminders increased the likelihood of reaching the savings target by 3% and upped the total amount saved by 6%. Reminders that referred to specific savings goals were "two times more effective than reminders that did not mention the goal".
To set your goals in stone, try naming your account to reflect what you are actually saving for to tap into the success of the savings reminders that mention specific goals. Go a step further and set up automatic payments to make saving part of your regular routine. Before you know it those all-important savings will start piling up. The eZonomics article Four tips to cut procrastination also suggests imagining your future self, making a deal with friends and family, and using technology such as the likes of Stickk to get you on top of your plans.
Little by little
Barking Up the Wrong Tree blogs about ways to increase motivation to accomplish goals. It suggests breaking up tasks into those that are completed and those that are still left to do – then focusing on the smaller of the two lists. This apparently makes tasks seem more manageable and easier to accomplish.