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Step Five: Plan Your Route

Now it's time to get down to numbers and actually plan your route. Based on the amounts in the CURRENT column on the My Money Map worksheets, assign a target amount in the CHOOSE & PLAN column for each income and expense item.  Decide if amount stays the same or will change based on the choices you've made in step four.  It may seem tedious, but remember you want to account for every penny of your resources coming in and then direct where it needs to go. You are in control!

Here are some more things to remember during this process:

- Include the financial goals you set in the Invest in Yourself module

- Include the monthly set aside for the periodic expenses you have coming down the road

- Set realistic expectations for your spending, remembering your money values and those of other in your household

- Make sure that you process any paperwork that may be needed, i.e., filling out a new Form W-4 with your employer to change withholding allowances or completing the enrollment form for your retirement savings plan

- If the numbers don’t work, go back and review

Lastly, and most importantly, remember the importance of using a money map. A money map will help you get to where you want to be financially.   Here is an example of a completed money map.

Income Graphic FULL

Expense Graphic FULL

Cash Flow Graphic FULL