Gene Balerna, CIMA® · The Bedminster Group

How Small, Consistent Actions Can Payoff BIG in Finance & Life

What was your last major accomplishment?

Did you achieve it overnight?

Probably not if we're talking about life-changing goals, like dropping bad habits or picking up good ones.

And if you're like most folks, you're probably setting these types of big goals more than you achieve them.1

In fact, many of us set new goals every new year.

When we do, we tend to be pretty optimistic, setting a high bar and long-shot goals.

With that, we also tend to set ourselves up for failure.

That's because most of us don't have a plan for working toward our goals.2

Instead, we embrace that "go-big-or-go-home" mindset that can leave us falling short. It can also set us back and put our motivation into a tailspin.3

We can turn all that around, though, and actually accomplish more by focusing on less.

That means less occasional heavy lifting and more simple day-to-day steps that can help us make real progress.

That small shift in our approach can be a powerful way to accomplish more in many aspects of life.

Let's see how it can work for us in finance by walking through some small, consistent steps any of us can take day to day to achieve extraordinary results in the big picture.

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6 Tiny Steps to Achieve Greater Results in Your Financial Life

#1: Tiptoe to start

Think about your goals and what you can do every day to get there. Then, break that task down to an absurdly small level. That's where you start. Stay at that level for weeks, a month, or more – whatever it takes for you to get bored with it. After that, take it up a notch very slowly, raising the bar by no more than ~10%.3

The point is to make the task so minor that it seems like it's not worth doing. That keeps the stakes low and makes the task a "no brainer" day to day.

Savings & Retirement Example: Put $1 in your savings or retirement account every day. If you start saving $1/day in month 1, raising that by $0.10 a month for one year, you could save roughly $435 by the end of the year.

Spending Example: Reverse the above example, spending $1 less every day to start. Again, if you scale that up just $0.10/month, you could end up saving $435 by year's end.

The tiptoeing here isn't just about the money you save. It's also about the small habit you're creating.

#2: Automate wherever possible

You could use technology and apps to automate your daily small actions. That could mean setting up automatic transfers, so you're not manually transferring funds day to day.

It could also mean using spending trackers, savings tools, and retirement planners to simplify money management. Again, the point is to make those small, day-to-day tasks as simple as possible.

#3: Piggyback

Pair your new small daily tasks with anything that's already part of your routine. That connection can make it easier to fold new tasks into your daily rituals, so you don't forget them – and so they become second nature faster.3

Example: Schedule your small daily money habits around your morning, lunchtime, or evening routines. If you're waiting for coffee to brew in the morning, for example, use that as your time to check your savings, spending, and retirement apps. You could also fold a little learning into your nighttime routines, taking 5 minutes or so before bedtime to catch up on finance news or watch a short video on finance.

#4: Talk about it

Don't be afraid to talk about money with the folks you trust. Whether it's your spouse, your kids, or your friends, talking about finance can open your eyes to new ways of thinking and doing things. It can also help you stay accountable with your financial goals.

Here are some questions that can start productive conversations about money:

What was the best financial decision you've made today?

What's the best money lesson you've learned so far?

Were your parents good or bad with money?

Whether you ask questions or talk specifics on costs, budgets, or finance in your life, talking about it is what's important. It can clear the air of any "shame" around these conversations and open up opportunities to learn more, share more, and stay on the same page with the folks you care about.4

#5: Boost Your IQ

Set aside 3 to 5 minutes a day to do something that teaches you a little more about finance. You could read or watch the financial news. You can also listen to podcasts, watch videos, or read a couple of paragraphs out of a book on finance. You can even subscribe to YouTube channels that routinely put out bite-sized shorts on money.

The point is to engage with the topic every day, so you're adding one more brick to your house of financial knowledge.

#6: Check in regularly

Check in daily with yourself, and schedule regular check-ins with the folks you trust. That could mean going over the money with your spouse every month or even checking in quarterly with a financial professional.

These check-ins can add another level of accountability, education, and motivation. And that can be the key to staying on track long-term, especially when the going gets tough and it's hard to see the forest for the trees.

It's those small, consistent actions we take over time that have the power to REALLY move the needle.


How Little Steps Can Go a Long Way Toward Big Change & Real Success

Which small steps will you try out first?

Which ones are you already in the habit of?

However you answer those questions, the truth is big goals are terrific – and big accomplishments don't usually happen after one major move or some flip of the switch.

Instead, it's those small, consistent actions we take over time that have the power to really move the needle.


Because with small steps, we have bite-sized, approachable pieces that can be easier to take on and "digest" day to day.

That can keep us motivated, give us small wins to celebrate, and make our goals seem more attainable.

With that, we can build up some momentum, and those small daily actions can start to become easier and easier.

Over time, they may even become second nature, giving you new habits to build on.

That can be the foundation for achieving bigger goals and doing truly remarkable things with your finances and your life.3

Of course, none of this can happen if you don't get started.

Sometimes, all it takes is a fresh perspective from someone you trust to take the first step.




    Gene Balerna, CIMA®

    The Bedminster Group

    (843) 705-5544


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Gene Balerna, CIMA®

The Bedminster Group

Not receiving our newsletter?

Get insightful info on finances and more in your inbox every month with the


Gene Balerna, CIMA®

The Bedminster Group