Money and Life
(Financial Planning Association of Australia)

Procrastinate no more! Make 2020 the year you get help from a pro to reach your financial goals.

Have you ever thought about getting financial advice? Maybe you’ve thought about it for a while, you just never seem to get around to it. Perhaps you even made a New Year’s resolution to see a financial planner… yet… you haven’t made the appointment yet.

If so, you’re not alone. Almost half of Aussies (41%) plan on getting advice sometime ‘in the future’, yet just 12 per cent of people actually got that advice in the past year, according to recent research.

Why do we delay?

There are many reasons why people delay seeking the financial advice they need.

The same survey found that concern about the cost of financial advice, coupled with a lack of trust in the industry were barriers for many people.

35% of people are worried that advice will be too expensive.

For others, in particular women, people in remote and regional communities and young people, seeking financial advice can be a daunting prospect.

The study found that people who had considered getting financial advice,but didn’t, were overwhelmingly likely to be younger (83% under 55 years of age) and female (62%).

46% of 18-34 year olds have thought about getting financial advice, but didn’t.

Yet, with the risks of delaying, can you really afford not to get advice?

The right financial advice can help you budget, save and build wealth, protect your assets, and achieve your financial goals at different stages of life.

In fact, 80% of people believe financial advice has given them greater peace of mind.

So how can you beat the procrastination blues and actually make it happen?

Give procrastination the boot

Procrastination often happens when our goal feels overwhelming, or ‘too big’ to tackle. Maybe you’re not sure where to start, or what you need to do to reach your goal. The end result is that you don’t start at all = procrastination.

Similarly, we can procrastinate when we don’t have enough information to make a decision. If you find yourself running through multiple scenarios in your mind, but unable to take firm action in any one direction, it’s likely that you’re missing key information.

So what can you do about it?

Start small, go fast

One of the best ways to bust procrastination is to break your large, open-ended, goal down into smaller, more specific and practical chunks. For example, ‘retire with enough money to travel the world’, could become several, more specific, actions, like start a budget, consolidate your debt and see a financial planner.

Try making a list of the actions you’ll take to start your journey and tick them off one by one. If you’re not sure where to start, here’s our advice.

Easy does it

Pick the easiest thing you can think of to start with. Studies show that once you start something, you’re more likely to finish it – and then forget about it. It’s only unfinished tasks that hang around in our mind, causing us stress and anxiety (and fueling further procrastination).

Five-minutes is all it takes

You can use this technique together with the first two. Ask yourself, “What can I do in five minutes right now that will help move this forward?”. Once you’ve chosen your task, set a timer for five-minutes and get to work.

Visualise the end goal

Focusing on a specific positive outcome that you want to achieve can help keep you motivated. For example, the dream holiday home you want to own one day. Or what you’ll do the day after you retire from work. We’re more motivated to take action when the goal feels achievable.