Life Planning for Single Parents
Written by guest-blogger Jackie Waters of www.hyper-tidy.com
Life planning is more than simply setting goals: it’s a journey of self-discovery and it’s important for you and your children, especially if you’re a single parent. The foundations you set now are crucial for your future happiness with your family. A life plan can make you more productive and boost your confidence. If you have older children, it’s great to have them participate.
Consider Financial Responsibilities
As a single parent, your financial responsibilities are far-reaching. There are many things to consider, including life insurance, college funds and your retirement plan. Try not to get overwhelmed by this part of your life planning by breaking each section down. How far ahead you need to plan will depend on how old your children are and at what stage in your life you are developing your life plan.
Plan your estate: What you need to think about now is drawing up a will and planning your estate. You can use this not only to allocate your money and possessions, but also to name a guardian for your children in the event that something happens to you.
Set financial goals: Project your cash flow, even if you have an irregular source of income. That way, you can adjust your lifestyle accordingly. Set short-term goals, such as paying off debt, and long-term goals, such as investing for retirement.
Get a savings account: You should also try to keep an emergency fund at all times so you have a financial safety net.
Discover What Makes You Happy
Once you have figured out what makes you happy in life, you have a sense of purpose and direction, which in turn makes you feel more fulfilled. A good way to work this out is to imagine your life in the future and how you would most like it to be. From this picture, you can work backwards and figure out each stage along the way. Think about which obstacles are preventing you from achieving happiness and how you can eliminate them.
Make a list: Write down the things that make you happy and why.
Examine your life: Take a look at where you are in your life right now and see what changes you can make to achieve greater happiness.
Identify the negative: Pinpoint the sources of unhappiness in your life and consider what you can do to eliminate them.
Make Time for Family Fun
Spending fun time together with your children is important. If you are co-parenting, it’s even more important to plan a schedule. Sit down with your kids, go over the calendar, and mark out blocks of time when you can do fun activities.
Extracurricular activities: Make sure you have time in your schedule to participate in any extracurricular activities with your kids.
Plan vacations: Talk to your co-parent so you can schedule vacations and special days with your children.