Being in control of your finances can be empowering – and the way you think about your future could help you get there. Adopting a long-term mindset can help us to better connect with our future selves. And by thinking ahead and setting meaningful goals, this could contribute to improving your financial wellbeing in the present.
As the cost of living remains challenging for many people, it’s understandable if you’ve found it hard to think clearly about the future. It’s important to remember that money concerns are normal, even if you’re doing well financially. More than half (51%) of average earners, and more than 1 in 3 top earners worry about money. This shows our mindset can play a key role in our overall financial wellbeing.
In this article we’ll outline the benefits that long-term thinking can bring you – both now and in the future. Unless otherwise stated, all statistics are from our 2023 Financial wellbeing research, conducted with over 10,000 UK residents.
What is a long-term mindset?
A long-term mindset is about planning for the here and now as well as the future. It’s being aware of the bigger picture, as what happens here and now is just a snapshot of what’s to come as we live longer lives. That’s why our financial plans shouldn’t just cover present-day issues, but long-term goals, too. Only 17% of UK adults have a plan to achieve their long-term money goals.
People are on average living longer and life is likely to become more multi-staged with more opportunities to retrain, upskill or take breaks during our professional lives. This means it’s important we learn to balance managing our money now with being prepared for what’s to come.
In practical terms, this could mean building a pot of money, or ‘transition fund’, that you can rely on at a time when there might be an interruption to your income. For example, if you want to retrain to take a new career direction or take time out to care for a family member. However, while having a long-term mindset is important for all these reasons, it doesn’t mean neglecting yourself today – we can all benefit from finding ways to enjoy and create meaning in the present.