If you can see it, you can achieve it.

Envisioning future results is the psychological technique that will help you actually save for what you want, according to new research just released by the American Psychological Association.  Creating “vicid, detailed menal picture of their future” is the best way to motivate yourself to stick with your plan to save for a house, retirement, or other financial goals.

eye prize 8-26In other words, it’s not just what you know about saving and planning: it’s how you imagine your life will be when you have saved and planned.

Practical applications of this insight? Have a good idea of what your housing goals are in terms of lifestyle and life satisfaction. You might be more motivated to save and minimize debt if you envision yourself in the country house you’ve always wanted rather than trying to hit a theoretical savings goal.

Discuss shared goals with your partner so you can also share the anticipation and support each other in sticking with the habits that will deliver the result you both want.

Reframe daily decisions from self-discipline and sacrifice to building towards the vision. That fancy take out coffee that you aren’t having today will soon result in the coffee in the living room with the view you’ve always wanted.