Most of us have financial goals. First house. A new car. College for the kids. Or a summer getaway to Hawaii.

Often, we take longer than we’d like to achieve our goals because of pesky financial roadblocks that get in the way – unexpected medical expenses, unanticipated car repairs, etc. And these are the obvious and unavoidable ones.

There are other roadblocks to meeting financial goals, however. These are the less obvious expenditures that you may not factor into your monthly expenses or even think about until the end of the month when you ask yourself, “where did my money go?”

Here’s an example of one of my clients.

Katy, one of my first clients – was a young woman around 28 with a great job and a good salary and compensation package. Her main goal was to buy a residence in San Francisco. She figured it would take her about 5 years. I wondered why so long…and she couldn’t quite explain it. She just blamed it on her Bay Area lifestyle.

So, we dug deeper. We took a look at her monthly expenses as she did not seem to be an extravagant person.

Turns out that she would spend 2-3 weekends each month with some friends at their home in the wine country. Almost every time she went up, they asked her to pick up things like meat, wine, and other groceries with the promise of paying her back once she arrived. Problem was…no one gave her any money toward the supplies, which ran $300-$400 a weekend.

I suggested that perhaps she needed to find new friends.

Once she saw what she was doing, and how that was impacting her goal, she did just that. We worked together for many years, through her real estate upgrades, her marriage, her children. And yes, her new friends.

If you see your money/dreams/goals/desires slipping away, or taking longer, it’s time to TAKE CHARGE! Here’s how.

CONTROL your money. This doesn’t mean you have to deprive yourself. Just hit the pause button periodically and take stock/take charge of what you’re spending. Don’t wait until the end of the month.

FOCUS on your goal. Decide what’s important short term and how that impacts your long-term goal. Katy lost sight of her goals and let her so-called friends sway her…

COMMITMENT to the goal. Decide what you want and be accountable to yourself.

Get a grip and ask yourself, “What are your friends costing you?”

We can help! Let us help you gain a perspective and hold you accountable to reaching your goals.