Short-Term Urgent vs Long-Term Significant

I’ve noticed a trend in my life, and perhaps you have seen it as well in your own life.  It seems that things which are short-term urgent tend to trump items which are long-term significant.

Here are two common examples:

  1. Purchase a video game for our child (who already has 85 games) but there is no money saved for his college education
  2. Spend our money at yet another expensive restaurant (only to be hungry again 3 hours later), but refuse to save money for the health insurance deductible even though we know that we WILL get sick someday

This issue is best defeated by having a monthly budget (short-term plan) as well as a fully thought out “Plans, Hopes, and Dreams” list (long-term plan).

When you know the actual dream that is being sacrificed when faced with a short-term urgent item, there is a much greater likelihood that you will overcome that temptation.

QUESTION:  What is the one short-term urgent item in your life that seems to keep destroying your finances and erodes your ability to fund your long-term dreams?

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One Response to “Short-Term Urgent vs Long-Term Significant”

  1. RobS April 30, 2012 at 4:11 pm #

    Hi Joe, all the time this happens. I’m not sure how many “budgets” I’ve seen where someone has six figures of debt but the person is playing golf twice a week, or they’re paying for a cell phone for their 80 year old mother or their 12 year old child.

    It seems most people are very short-sighted when it comes to long-term vision. This might also explain why giving is so weak in most churches.

    I might not answer the question you originally posed, as it isn’t plaguing our family right now. Having a financial plan done to help us ID some long-term goals and having semi-annual meetings to re-focus on those goals has been a benefit though, I can confess that.

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