Some of the most important goals for single moms who want a better life
With so many goals to choose from, it can be hard for a single mom to know what to focus on. But, the fact is, not all goals are created equal.
While some goals are good, they won’t really do much to improve your life. And, if you are like me with limited time, focusing your time and energy on the most important goals is the way to go.
So, if you are wondering how to set goals and what goals to set, you have come to the right place. At the end of this post, you should have some clarity about where you should spend most of your time and energy.
Let’s get right into it.
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1. FINANCIAL STABILITY SHOULD BE THE #1 GOAL FOR SINGLE MOMS
As far as I am concerned, financial stability should be the number one goal of every single mom (unless you are already financially secure). If you are a single mom and the sole or main breadwinner for your family, your main priority should be financial security.
Few things worry me as much as not being able to provide for my family. That’s the reason I wake up every money and go to work. The reason I am always exploring new ideas is that I want financial stability for my family.
I want to take care of our current and future needs. So, most of my decisions are geared towards achieving financial freedom. Financial freedom means different things to different people, so whatever it means to you, that’s what you should work towards.
Now, let’s look at some ways to achieve financial stability as a single mom.
1. EARN MORE MONEY
Let’s just cut to the chase. You can’t enjoy financial stability if you don’t earn enough money to take care of your basic needs, save and invest.
If all your earnings go toward paying bills and taking care of your basic needs, you will struggle to reach financial security. Yes, this is true even if you are the most frugal person in the world. There’s only so much you can do with minimum wage.
So, if financial stability is a priority for you, then your focus should be on earning more money. Let’s look at a few ways to earn more money.
- Get a better paying job. You can do that by earning a degree, upgrading your skills, changing careers, getting a promotion at your current job, or getting a job if you are unemployed.
- Starting a business. A good business idea can boost your income much more than a job.
- Have a profitable side hustle in addition to your job. Lots of people have turned their side hustles into full time jobs. The key is to find the right one and the time to work on it.
As you can see, there are quite a few ways to earn more money as a single mom. Pick one and go all out. Don’t try to do too many things at a time. For instance, if you prefer working instead of owning a business, figure out how you can earn more money as an employee.
2. SAVE MORE MONEY
You know what they say. It’s not how much you make but how much you save or keep. No matter how much your make, if you have nothing to show for it, then it doesn’t really matter.
Financial stability will prove elusive if you are a spender and not a saver. I love spending money. I like nice things and sometimes I go overboard, but I also prioritize saving because I know that’s the key to peace of mind and financial security.
If you struggle with saving money, the easiest way is to automate the process. That means finding a way to make automatic deposits into your savings account.
Okay, for those of you who say you can’t save because there’s nothing left after paying all your bills, see above about earning more money.
The easiest way to find money to save is to earn more. When you have a surplus, it’s easy to put some away. Mind you, that’s not the only way. You still have to create a budget, watch your spending, cut expenses and avoid debt. When you put all these things together, financial stability becomes achievable.
Below are the three types of savings accounts you need to achieve financial security.
- Regular savings account
- Emergency fund
- Retirement savings account
Once you have these three accounts, you will be well on your way to financial stability (as long as you keep funding them).
If you need help with financial management or personal finance, check out the recommended resources below.
- How Much Do I need to Retire?
- The Simple Path to Wealth
- Your Money or Your Life
- The Bogleheads’ Guide to Investing
- Budget Planner
2. SINGLE MOM GOALS: BECOME MORE EFFICIENT AND PRODUCTIVE
One of the biggest goals for single moms is to become more efficient and productive in every area of their life.
For many single moms, time is in short supply, so they often have to choose between tasks or activities. For example, missing a child’s game because they have to work to pay the bills, or giving up exercise or other activities to work or spend time with their kids. I worked holidays and weekends for a while because I needed the extra cash, but that came at the expense of self-care and spending time with my kids.
While we can’t completely eliminate the need to choose between one activity or the other, we can certainly make things a bit easier by becoming more efficient and productive.
So, what does becoming more efficient and productive look like? It means cutting down how long it takes us to complete tasks or get things done, cutting down on procrastination, minimizing distractions, becoming good at time management, and finding ways to speed things up.
When you become more productive and efficient, you will be amazed at how much ground you can cover with the limited time you have. Being smart with how you spend your time will leave you feeling more relaxed and accomplished.
If one of your biggest challenges is never having enough time to get things done, pursue your goals or pet projects, or spend enough time with your family, becoming more productive might be the answer.
Having a routine or schedule can also help you become more efficient or productive, so that’s something else to think about. Also, consider setting self-imposed deadlines and investing in some productivity tools like some of the ones listed below.
3. SPEND MORE TIME ON SELF-CARE
We can’t talk about single mom goals without talking about self-care. For many single moms, self-care is pretty much non-existent, no wonder so many are stressed out of their minds, and some are at breaking point.
As a single mom for over ten years, I know how hard it is to find time for yourself. My needs took a backseat for so many years that it felt strange when I took time off or had alone time.
But, here is something you need to know.
Your self-care is a priority. It is as important as caring for your kids because guess what? If you break down or lose your health, it is going to be even harder to take care of yourself and your family.
You can’t create or enjoy a better life if you are completely run down or you neglect your health and wellbeing. So, one of your top goals as a single mom should be taking care of yourself.
Here are some things to include as part of your self-care regimen or plan.
- Get that health checkup you have been putting off or see that dentist or nutritionist.
- Lose some weight if this is affecting your health.
- Drink more water and eat healthy. Also throw in some exercise while you are at it.
- Take care of your mental health. Avoid toxic people and environments.
- Catch up on some rest and relaxation.
- Find ways to decrease your stress levels. Talk to someone, join a support group, leave an unhealthy relationship, or ask for help with a problem you can’t resolve.
- Pamper and treat yourself as often as you can. Watch a movie, go out alone, enjoy a spa day or have a spa day at home. Have a pedicure or manicure. Get that massage you have been longing for.
- Splurge on some new clothes, shoes, bags, or other accessories (but, please don’t go crazy).
- Read all the books or romance novels you have been wanting to read.
- Catch up with friends or family.
- Plan a trip somewhere (there are lots of ways to do it cheaply).
As you can see, there’s no shortage of self-care ideas. You are only limited by what you are willing to do (or how much you want to spend).
While you don’t have to do every single thing on this list, please pick a few of them, and do them. You will feel better afterward.
4. BECOME A BETTER PARENT
I can’t have a better family life if I suck at parenting, that’s why one of my biggest single mom goals is to become a better parent.
While my kids need me to be a good parent, I need to be a better parent for myself because I know it would make life a lot more enjoyable for all of us.
Since I spend a lot of time with my kids (dad has minimal contact), it means I am their biggest influence and the one they look up to for guidance. I take this responsibility very seriously that’s why I keep striving to be a good mom. I don’t always succeed mind you, but I try.
There’s quite a lot of stigma attached to single parenting (especially for single moms). Lots of folks think kids from single-parent families are delinquent or up to no good. This is a stereotype I try to overcome as much as possible.
Now, this doesn’t mean that I make all my decisions based on other people’s perceptions, but I am aware of the bias.
So, what does being a better parent look like? For me, this is what it looks like.
- Set a good example for my kids (both in word and deed). I have seen a lot of hypocrisy the last few years, the mind boggles. I want my kids to see me live my values and not just say them.
- Become more patient and kind.
- Spend more time with my kids.
- Be open, build trust and encourage conversations. I want my children to know they can trust me and come to me no matter what.
- Teach my kids life skills, so they can take care of themselves and others.
- Teach my kids to respect people, treat them with kindness, and learn how to serve.
- Give my kids a great education (including financial literacy). If you need help teaching financial literacy, start with The Everything Kids’ Money Book.
- Provide for my children and make life more comfortable.
- Teach the kids how to be more responsible including taking responsibility for their actions.
- Help kids become critical thinkers and seekers of truth and knowledge.
- Help them develop a love of learning. If you need help in this area, check out Honey for a Child’s Heart.
Are you still with me?
Yes, I take being a better or good parent very seriously, especially after seeing the damage bad parenting can do. So, if one of your single mom goals is to become a better parent, hope you can draw some inspiration from this post.
5. MAKE GOOD DECISIONS AND NEVER REPEAT PAST MISTAKES
Knowing how to make good decisions is one of the most essential of all the single mom goals. Whether you succeed or fail hinges on your ability to make the right decision at the right time. So, yes, I think this should be a top goal for single moms who want to live their best life.
A smart person learns from her mistakes. Making the same mistakes over and over again is a recipe for disaster.
I know some single moms who keep repeating the same mistakes (especially in their love life). These moms jump from one unhealthy relationship to the other with disastrous results. Unfortunately, some people just can’t make the right decisions when their emotions are involved.
Anyway, if you truly want a better life, you must learn how to make good decisions and avoid repeating past mistakes, especially ones you can’t undo.
There are lots of people who will prey on you if you show signs of weakness or lack confidence, so I urge you to work on personal development, so you can be well-informed and become more confident.
If you struggle with decision-making, here are some tips to help you with the process.
- Learn everything you can about a problem or issue you are dealing with. Ask questions, get clarifications, so you can make a sound decision.
- Consider all the factors critically. Think about how the decision would affect or change your life.
- Do you have to make this decision right now or can it wait?
- What other options are available?
- What are the consequences of making or not making this decision?
- What are the risks?
- Are you making this decision voluntarily or are you being coerced?
- Do you feel comfortable making this decision?
Whether it is buying a car, a house, your children’s education, where to live, whether to change jobs, whom to date, or anything else, the questions and tips above will come in handy.
Yes, it’s true that asking these questions or following these tips doesn’t guarantee you will make the right decisions every time, but if nothing else, they should put you on the right path and give you some time to think. This is really helpful if you are prone to making impulsive decisions.
Final thoughts on top 5 single mom goals for a better life
With lots of goals to chase after, it can be difficult to know what to focus on. But the truth is, some goals are more important than others.
While I consider the goals in this post to be some of the most important single mom goals, you might have other ideas, so feel free to focus on the goals that are most important to you.
Finally, remember goals are meaningless if you have no plan for achieving them. So, for every goal you decide to focus on, take some time to create a plan for accomplishing the goal. Goals don’t work unless you do.
Are you a single mom? Do you struggle with goal setting?