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Having a disability means certain things could be more difficult, but that doesn’t mean financing a home and car has to be. As a person with a disability, having a home and car that suits your needs for accessibility and safety is essential—but where do you start with finding the best options for you?

Luckily, there are many options when it comes to financing a home and car. Below, we’ll outline the process of applying for a home or auto loan as well as provide the additional resources available to you.

Government Definition of a Disability

The federal government defines a person with a disability as someone who:

  • Has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more “major life activities”
  • Has a record of such an impairment
  • Is regarded as having such an impairment 

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) defines “major life activities” as being walking, speaking, hearing, seeing, breathing, working, learning, performing manual tasks, and caring for oneself. It can also include the operation of major bodily activities. 

HUD includes examples of a “physical or mental impairment” being orthopedic, visual, speech and hearing impairments, cerebral palsy, autism, epilepsy, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, HIV, developmental disabilities, mental illness, drug addiction, and diabetes. 

These are just a few examples of the many different types of disabilities. Keep in mind that the federal government considers a disability to be any impairment that imposes a substantial limitation on a major life activity. Having a disability that is recognized by the federal government could qualify you for financial assistance and mortgage programs for people with disabilities.

Financing Home Ownership for Those with Disabilities

Owning a home with a disability would be especially ideal because you can ensure it has the proper accessibilities that fit your needs. However, owning a home is a huge financial decision that many people resign to be unattainable. Consider median earnings for those with no disability are over $30,469, the median income for individuals living with a disability is $20,250.

Getting a loan for your own home can look daunting no matter your income, so it can be especially so if you’ve struggled with meeting loan income requirements. Thankfully there are several options to choose from if you’ve had difficulty with loan approvals. These programs can assist you in both purchasing a home and outfitting it to accommodate your requirements, as well as help with understanding the basic jargon of home financing.

Fannie Mae

The Federal National Mortgage Association (FNMA, more commonly known as Fannie Mae) is a government-sponsored enterprise founded to make mortgages available to moderate-to-low- income borrowers. They provide affordable housing financing for homebuyers and renters in the U.S, and offer two primary lines of business:

1. Single-Family

Fannie Mae’s single-family business funding makes stable, predictable mortgage financing options like the 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage option a possibility. The lenders they work with can tailor mortgage loans to meet the needs of different borrowers.

2. Multi-Family

The multi-family business funding provides financing options for multi-family rental properties. They work with a national network of participating lenders to help finance apartment buildings across the country.

VA Home Loans for Disabled Veterans

The VA Home Loan is a great option for veterans with disabilities or active duty military who are looking to buy a home. Most veterans who qualify for a VA home loan are eligible for no down payments, low-interest rates, no mortgage insurance premiums, and a host of other benefits.

The VA Loan Entitlement is the actual amount (percentage or dollar) that the VA will guarantee. While the VA Loan Entitlement will vary by individual, the standard Entitlement is either $36,000 or 25% of the total loan amount.

Habitat for Humanity 

Habitat for Humanity is a global nonprofit, volunteer-based organization working in communities across the U.S., and in approximately 70 countries. They offer families in need of decent and affordable housing the option to build their own home (alongside volunteers) and pay an affordable mortgage. They also renovate existing homes for those whose accessibility needs are not being met and assist people repair or renovate their own homes or neighborhoods.

Local Habitat for Humanity family selection committees select homeowners based on the following criteria:

  1. The applicant’s level of need
  2. Their willingness to partner with Habitat
  3. Their ability to repay a mortgage through an affordable payment plan

How to Apply for a Mortgage Loan 

Once you’ve decided to mortgage a house, it’s time to start applying for a mortgage loan. This process takes a while and has several steps, so it’s important to make sure you know the different aspects of applying and the items you’ll need in order to apply. Finding the best option for you and your disability can take a little longer, so be prepared with a list of questions about financing a home that is accessible for you.

Check Your Credit Score 

When applying for a mortgage loan, lenders want to be sure you have a good credit score and a positive history of making payments on time. This proves to them that you’re a trustworthy person to lend money to, as you are more likely to pay it back than someone with a lower credit score. 

If you’re wanting to find an accessible home ASAP, check your credit early and ensure you’re in a good place to begin financing a home. If your credit is in a good place, keep doing what you’re doing, but if it needs a little help take action to make sure it’s in a good enough place to qualify you for the loan you need. Whether that’s talking to your credit lender, a banker, or a financial coach, make sure you’re doing what you can to get your credit up to where it needs to be.

Apply with Various Lenders and Find the Right One for You

Finding the right mortgage lender includes much more than having a good credit score. You want to work with a team of professionals, helpful lenders who will guide you through the process. Consider making the process easier, and find better lender options, by getting pre-approved for your mortgage. 

To ensure that you find the right lender for your individualized circumstances, shop around and compare rates from the various options. When you’re shopping around, make sure you’re asking questions about their process, fees, and anything else you should know before deciding. Read the fine print on their quotes, and take your time comparing.

Gather Documentation on Debts and Expenses

Once you’ve settled with the best lender for you, it’s time to round up the documentation you’ll need to apply for your mortgage.

Mortgage applications want to know your full financial history. This includes listing all of your debts, and the regular fixed expenses you spend money on every month. This includes everything from car insurance to student loan payments, so be sure you’re reporting those numbers accurately. Save all of your previous bills, like rent and utilities, so you can report those numbers as accurately as possible. 

Though you’ll need to report those numbers, you won’t need to submit those bills. Your lender will check those against your credit report, which will list your bills and whether or not you’re paying them back on time. 

Even if a debt doesn’t show on your credit report, you are still obligated to disclose it on your application as intentionally misrepresenting assets constitutes fraud. 

If you have no previous credit history, be prepared to give your lender a list of previous landlords and utility providers so they can check your history of on-time payments.

Provide Proof of Income

Next, you’ll need to establish that you can afford the payments on the loan you’re applying for. Depending on your type of income, you may need to prove:

Employment income

Lenders will ask for your W-2s from the last two years as well as your individual pay stubs showing your income from the past 30 days. If you have multiple jobs, bring the necessary paperwork from all of your jobs. 

Lenders will also likely ask for signed copies of your tax returns from the past two years and will ask you to fill out forms allowing them to request copies of those forms directly from the Internal Revenue Service.

Unemployment income

If you’re employed in a seasonal sector that includes regular layoffs—such as tourism, agriculture, or fishing—your insurance payments from unemployment can count towards your regular income.

You will have to prove that you’ve worked in these seasonal fields for the past two years, and the lender will ask your employer if you will be rehired next season. Bring in your checks that show year-to-date earnings, or a photocopy of your bank statement showing the deposit.

Disability income

Disability income counts as qualifying proof of income. Lenders will ask for a copy of your disability policy or the benefits statement from the source of your disability income, showing your eligibility and the amount of and frequency of payments. If your disability comes from the Social Security Administration, you will need your SSA award letter or current receipt.

Under policies instituted by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, lenders cannot ask doctors for details of your medical condition. They should assume that disability payments will continue for the foreseeable future unless your paperwork indicates otherwise.

Other income

If you make any other type of income that isn’t included in this list (pension, a car allowance, Social Security, annual bonus, royalties from published works) you can count it as income if you can document it and prove it as your own.

The general rule toward these outside sources of income is that you must prove it was a regular, steady source of income for the last 12 months, and that you can expect to continue receiving it for at least the next three years.

To prove ownership, use letters or statements spelling out what you’re entitled to as well as check stubs or photocopies of bank statements showing the actual deposits.

Assets

If you own CDs, savings accounts, retirement accounts, stocks or bonds, or a life insurance policy with cash or real estate value, you will need to provide proof of ownership and market value.

You will need deeds and other documentation for real estate, and most lenders will accept your two most recent statements from a bank or brokerage firm to prove ownership of stocks, bonds, and other monetary holdings.

Tips for Auto Loans for Individuals with Disabilities 

Just like with finding a loan to finance your home, finding a car to accommodate your disability is vital to ensuring you have the means to transport yourself. In most cases, making a car accessible means buying the car at cost, and then making conversions and additions to outfit it to your requirements. While choosing the best auto loan and lender to finance your car can take a lot of work, there are clear steps you can take to make the process as seamless as possible.

Check Your Credit Score Ahead of Time 

Similar to applying for a mortgage, lenders will want to make sure you have good credit. Look at your credit score months before you apply for a loan to make sure you’re in good standing. If your credit isn’t looking good enough to qualify you for a loan, consider making some larger payments to pay off more of your debt, or talk to your credit lender for advice on how to improve your score before you apply for the loan.

Consider Getting a Co-Signer

If you’re worried that your credit score alone won’t allow you to qualify for an auto loan, consider asking someone to be your co-signer. Having a co-signer essentially means you are asking someone to help you take on the responsibility for repaying the loan, meaning they serve as an additional payment source if you can’t repay the loan in full yourself. They are not responsible for monthly payments and can help you qualify for a loan by combining your credit and theirs. This is a big responsibility to ask of someone, as it puts their credit at risk if you don’t repay. Keeping all of that in mind, think critically of who would be willing to help you qualify by co-signing for a loan with you.

Save for a Larger Down Payment 

Sometimes it will help you pay off an auto loan faster by signing up for a larger down payment, resulting in smaller monthly payments. Do your research on a down payment that might help you pay off your loan faster, but still reasonably fits in your budget, and start saving up for it. When shopping for your car, make sure to ask your dealer what their payment options are with a larger down payment.

Additional Resources

Sources 

Self | Department of Housing and Urban Development | VA Home Loan Centers | Fannie Mae | Interest.com | Consumer Finance | Investopedia



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From the Mint team: Mint may be compensated if you click on the links to our issuer partners’ offers that appear in this article. Our partners do not endorse, review or approve the content. Any links to Mint Partners were added after the creation of the posting.  Mint Partners had no influence on the creation, direction or focus of this article unless otherwise specifically stated. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer

 

There are several different benefits to having credit cards. Many cards come with a welcome offer that can be 100,000 points or higher. Others come with ongoing perks, such as free checked bags on a particular airline or free nights with a hotel chain. For other cards, a big benefit comes from the miles, points or cashback that comes with ongoing spending on the card. While many cards offer just 1 point per dollar spent for most purchases, it is not uncommon for cards to additionally offer bonus points for spending money in particular categories. Bonuses on grocery spending are particularly common as grocery spending is one of the biggest spending categories out there.

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

You’re going to see a lot of American Express on this list – Amex has certainly shown an interest in incentivizing spend at grocery stores as a bonus category. The first card on our list is the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express. The Blue Cash Preferred gives 6% cashback on U.S. supermarkets spending (up to the first $6,000 spent; then 1% afterward). That’s the highest grocery category bonus of any card out there.

The Blue Cash Preferred also gets 6% cashback on select U.S. streaming subscriptions, and 3% on transit (taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses) and gas. Currently, there is a welcome offer of $250 after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months, and there is a $95 annual fee (not waived the first year).

If you’re looking for a similar alternative with no annual fee, consider the Blue Cash Everyday® from American Express. The Blue Cash Everyday has a current welcome offer of $150 when you spend $1,000, and only gives 3% cashback on U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%).

The Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express

Another option from American Express is the Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express. It gives 3 Membership Rewards points per dollar spent at grocery stores (again only for the first $6,000 spent each year). The EveryDay Preferred also has a unique incentive to keep it front of wallet: for each billing period where you use it for at least 30 transactions you get 50% extra points. So you have the potential to get 4.5 Membership Rewards for each dollar spent at grocery stores. Generally, I value 1 Membership Rewards point more than 1 cent, so the grocery bonus on the EveryDay Preferred is comparable to that of the Blue Cash Preferred. The current welcome offer on the EveryDay Preferred is 15,000 Membership Rewards after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months.

The annual fee on the EveryDay Preferred is also $95, and once again there is a no annual fee version – the Amex EveryDay® Credit Card. The EveryDay card has a bonus of 10,000 Membership Rewards after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months and offers 2 Membership Rewards for each dollar spent at grocery stores, with a 20% bonus for using the card 20 times in one billing period.

Target REDcard™

Let’s take a break from American Express, shall we? Another option is the Target REDcard™, which gives 5% cashback at just about everything at Target, including groceries. Of course, unlike the American Express cards which give a bonus on spending at anything categorized as grocery, the Target REDcard only gives a bonus at, well, Target.

So if you get your groceries at Target, the REDcard makes a lot of sense. In addition to 5% back on groceries, the REDcard also gives 5% on most Target purchases online or in-store, 5% on purchases at in-store Starbucks stores, and more.

Another option for grocery spending at specific stores is the Chase Amazon Rewards card, which gives 3% cashback on purchases on Amazon.com and Whole Foods stores.

American Express® Gold Card

Another option from American Express is the American Express® Gold Card. The Gold card is more of a premium card and comes with a $250 annual fee.

The Gold Card has been positioned as a card for foodies – it earns 4 Membership Rewards at supermarkets AND restaurants, with a much higher limit (up to the first $25,000 of spending per year). To help offset the higher annual fee, it also comes with an annual $100 airline travel credit and a $10 monthly statement credit at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Boxed, and participating Shake Shack locations. I have this card and my wife and I like to use this credit by going on a monthly dessert date for a slice of cheesecake.

Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card

Going back to American Express cards, the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card is an option if you’re looking for travel rewards instead of cashback. The Surpass card gives 6x Hilton points at supermarkets, restaurants and gas stations. It also comes with a welcome offer of 125,000 Hilton points after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months, and an annual fee of $95. You’ll also get complimentary Hilton Gold status, which in my opinion is the most valuable mid-tier hotel status since it comes with free breakfast at most Hilton hotels.



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Though turning 18 may mark the beginning of adulthood, certain adult goals still seem far off: buying a house, getting a car, or taking out a loan. Yet even if you aren’t planning on owning a house of your own anytime soon, building the credit it requires to make these large purchases has to start at 18.

A positive credit history is not built overnight. That’s why building credit when you turn 18 is the best way to ensure you have the credit history you need when you need it. However, starting out trying to get credit with no history can feel like a paradox. Taking out a line of credit often requires a credit score to be approved at a favorable rate. How can you demonstrate creditworthiness with no prior history?

Thankfully there are ways designed to help young adults gain and build the credit they need to succeed in the world while getting more experience practicing smart financial habits.

1. Understand How Credit Is Built

The first step is having a solid grasp of what credit truly is. Your credit score is a representation of how trustworthy you are with borrowed money. The three major credit bureaus receive payment information from loans, credit cards, and sometimes bills, and uses that data to calculate your score. Here are the major factors that go into calculating your FICO credit score:

Payment History: Your record of on-time payments.

Age of Credit and Type of Credit: How long any lines of credit have been open, and what kind of credit they are, like credit cards or loans.

Credit Utilization Ratio: How much of your available credit you’re using as a portion of how much credit you have available.

Total Balances and Debt: The total amount that you owe across all lines of credit.

Recent Credit Inquiries: When a credit card company or loan servicer checks your credit history, this can be a hard inquiry. Fewer inquiries in a period of time demonstrate more responsible use of credit.

Available Credit: How much of your credit is unused.

2. Get Your First Credit Card

If possible, acquiring your own credit card will help you build your credit while practicing responsible credit card use. However, at 18, you probably won’t qualify for the majority of credit cards available to you. To avoid having too many recent hard inquiries, be strategic about the cards that you apply to:

Secured Credit Card: Unlike most credit cards, secured credit cards require a deposit that will act as your line of credit. They must be paid off in full each month, but over time with responsible use, you’ll be able to apply for a traditional unsecured credit card.

Student Credit Card: Credit card companies understand that just because you’re young, doesn’t mean you wouldn’t use credit wisely. If you’re enrolled in school, you may be able to apply for a student credit card. These cards usually come with higher interest rates and penalties, so make sure you shop around before committing to one.

3. Become an Authorized User

This is a simple avenue to building your credit if you can find someone to help you out. Becoming an authorized user on someone else’s credit card will allow you to make purchases and get positive history when they make payments on their card. However, if they miss a payment, it’s possible this could negatively impact your credit as well. Make sure you trust the person whose account you will be sharing.

4. Take out a Credit Builder Loan

A newer option available today are special loans designed specifically to help you build credit. These typically work by allowing you to make payments on your loan before giving you any money. Once you’ve already paid off the full amount of the loan, the bank or financial institution will disperse the funds to you. It may feel a bit like paying into a savings account, except that you must make your payments on time every month, or face penalties.

5. Take out a Student Loan

If you’re planning on attending college and need a little more funds to cover your expenses, a student loan may be the way to go. The plus side is that once you start repaying the loan, those payments will count towards a positive credit history. However, a student loan won’t do much for your credit score until then, so you shouldn’t take one out just for the sake of building credit.

6. Manage Your Credit Wisely

Some might say that the largest factor in building a positive credit history is time. Simply opening a credit card won’t improve your credit overnight, and taking out a loan you can’t afford to pay can set you even further back. To build credit, you should learn to manage your available credit well. Keep in mind the factors from our first step that make up your credit score. Always make payments on time, keep balances low, and check up on your credit score and credit report yearly to catch errors or fraud.

Sources: TheStreet | myFICO



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In order to find success, you first have to define what that looks like for you. Many great achievements begin as far-off goals, that seem impossible until it’s done. Though you may not absolutely need a goal to succeed, research still shows that those who set goals are 10 times more successful than those without goals.

Yet setting goals isn’t really the hard part — it’s everything that comes after. The path to achieving a goal is filled with setbacks and doubts and changes. It’s because of this that you may not be surprised to learn that 92 percent of people who set New Year’s resolutions never achieve them. The long road to making your dreams of owning your own home or paying off your excessive student loan debt can be hard, but there are tools out there designed to help make the journey easier.

We’ll go into detail on how to make your goals work better for you, and proven successful techniques below. You can also skip to the infographic.

1. Figure Out Your Driving Purpose

While your goal may be something small, like cooking at home more, understanding how this goal fits into your overall motivations can help you stay on track. For instance, cooking at home more may mean that you spend more time with your kids, allowing you to feel fulfilled. Or perhaps cooking at home means you have more money to put into a travel fund, fulfilling your dreams of experiencing as much adventure as you can.

When you understand how your goal relates to what you truly value, you can use these values to strengthen your motivation.

Standford Psychologist Kelly McGonigal recommends these questions to get connected with your ideal self:

  • What do I want to experience more of in my life, and what could I do to invite that/create that?
  • How do I want to be in the most important relationships or roles in my life? What would that look like, in practice?
  • What do I want to offer the world? Where can I begin?
  • How do I want to grow in the next year?

2. Write Out Your Goals

Writing your goals out means you’ll be anywhere from 1.2 to 1.4 times more likely to fulfill them. Experts theorize this is because writing your goals down helps you to choose more specific goals, imagine and anticipate hurdles, and helps cement them in your mind. Plus, displaying your goals in a prominent location can help remind you each day of what you’re working towards.

When writing down your goals, don’t forget to make them specific, measurable, and time-bound. Rather than writing down, “lose weight,” write, “lose 5 pounds in a month by working out three times a week.”

3. Break Them Into Manageable Pieces

No matter if your goal is to travel the country in a portable tiny house, or to learn to cook a great pie, one of the most important parts of making your goals happen is breaking them into manageable pieces. There are two ways to think about this: by time, or by task.

You could determine that you’ll have an hour each day to dedicate towards achieving your goal. If that’s the case, determine which tasks can be started immediately, which you can do every day and every month. If you’re learning a language, you can download an app and start right away. Each week you can compile your learning into notes, and each month you could attend a local meetup

Alternatively, you could break your goal into smaller milestones, and even small steps within those. While you may not set determine weekly and monthly goals, the idea is to break down the important tasks enough that you could easily tackle one each day.

4. Create A Realistic Schedule

Many people set an end date in order to motivate themselves to work hard — but this often results in them becoming demotivated the moment they fall off track. Instead of using a deadline as a way to force yourself to act, think of it as a tool to break up your tasks. When your tasks are broken up realistically, it should be easier to meet the deadline.

Remember to consider external factors. If your goal involves other people, like starting a business and hiring others, allow for flexibility.

Finally, when scheduling out your tasks, don’t forget to include small rewards, too. Determine a prize for completing milestones along the way, so you can stop and appreciate how far you’ve come — and springboard yourself on to the next task.

5. Plan for Hurdles

There’s a saying that the more you learn, the more you realize you don’t know. The sentiment applies to goal-setting as well. When you’re just starting out, there’s no way for you to know what you don’t know. You can’t anticipate every hurdle that will come your way, but understanding that having a moment where you might be a little in over your head is a part of the process will help you combat something known as the false hope syndrome.

The false hope syndrome is a term coined by social science researchers that describes how people tend to have unrealistic expectations of self-change. Once the illusion has been shattered, they lose their confidence in ever completing their goal.

Yet achieving your goals has nothing to do with avoiding failure. Failure is inevitable — quitting is not. Research shows that those who complete their goals don’t have fewer setbacks than those who give up on them. So when planning your goals, understand there will be setbacks, but the only thing you can do is learn from them and keep going.

6. Create a Support Team

Your friends and family can be there to cheer you on if you’re too exhausted to go on one more run at the end of the workday or keep you accountable if your new language skills are slipping. You may also want to take the opportunity to find a community of people all working towards the same goal online. If you’re trying to write a book, a forum where aspiring authors edit and give feedback and advice can be invaluable to your progress.

There is one caveat to the power of your support team, however. Some experts theorize that by telling your friends and family about your goal, you gain a rush of positive emotions and achieve what’s known as an identity goal. By announcing that you’re going to write a book, you know that your friends begin to see you as an author. This shift in your identity tricks your brain into feeling the goal has already been accomplished — stealing the momentum from the actual goal.

So when looping in your friends and family on your goals, be mindful about how you let their praise and expectations affect you. If you want to play it safe, you may not want to tell anyone at all.

7. Stay Positive

Both the most basic and the hardest part of achieving your goals. Looking on the bright side and celebrating small wins is an essential part of finding success. So when you miss a deadline or accidentally go over your budget goals, don’t beat yourself up. The negative emotions you associate with the failure will only keep you back from starting again.

This aversion can be hard to overcome, but staying positive and reconnecting with your driving purpose can help. There’s a mental trick that Mel Robbins suggests: The 5-second rule. When you feel an impulse to take action towards your goal, but don’t want to, count to five, then act. Past that five-second window, your brain will kill the impulse, and you’ll procrastinate.

Ultimately, achieving what you want to, and becoming the ideal version of yourself doesn’t take a superhuman level of self-control or expert knowledge. All it takes is consistency, a solid understanding of how your mind works, and some useful tools. Here are some goal-setting techniques to make achieving your dreams that much easier.

SMART-ER Goals

If you’ve dipped your toes into the world of goal-setting before, you’ve probably heard of SMART goals. These stand for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. Taking this goal-setting technique a step further, and they’re even SMARTER:

Specific: Say exactly what you want to achieve.

Measurable: Decide on numbers or another metric that marks success.

Achievable: Ensure your goal is realistic.

Relevant: Connect this goal to your overall vision.

Time-bound: Set a deadline.

Evaluate: Determine when you will check in on your goals.

Readjust: Stay flexible if goals need to change.

Smarter goal example: I will learn how to code a single webpage in HTML within a year, checking my progress each month with online tests, and readjusting if necessary.

SMARTER goals allow you to overcome hurdles, learn new challenges, and tackle them with greater ease. This makes SMARTER Goals perfect for a goal-setting beginner working on one task that you want to achieve mostly alone.

WOOP Method

Woop is a newer method that utilizes what’s known as mental contrasting. WOOP balances the inspiring power of positive thinking with a realistic understanding of potential obstacles. By visualizing both the positive outcomes and possible setbacks, you are more prepared to take action towards your goal. WOOP stands for:

Wish: Figure out an exciting yet realistic dream.

Outcome: Picture the best outcome of your goal, and how it would make you feel.

Obstacle: Anticipate obstacles that may hold you back.

Plan: Make an If/Then plan to overcome the obstacles if they occur.

WOOP goal example: I want to lose 20 pounds, which will make me feel proud. Yet I tend to overeat when I’m stressed, so if my schedule gets hectic, I will focus on eating reasonable portions.

The WOOP method is great for a goal-setter who struggles with falling off the bandwagon or loses motivation easily. For this reason, it’s especially helpful when you are trying to make or break a habit.

HARD Goals

HARD goals are just that: difficult. If you’re up for a challenge and want to ensure you’re pushing yourself, HARD goals make it possible.

Heartfelt: Invest emotionally in your goal.

Animated: See yourself achieving the goal.

Required: Find concrete reasons that you absolutely need to complete your goal.

Difficult: CHeck that your goal is difficult.

HARD goal example: I must pay off my student loans in order to start saving for a house.

Since HARD goals are difficult by design, they may not be best for the beginner goal-setter. Reserve HARD goals for things you have a strong motivation to complete.

CLEAR Goals

Not every goal can be realized alone, which is where CLEAR goals come in. This technique ensures everyone has what they need to participate. Clear stands for:

Collaborative: Ensure everyone is involved.

Limited: Set limits in time, money and scope.

Emotional: Tap into everyone’s passion

Appreciable: Break large goals into measurable steps.

Refinable: Give yourself permission to refine the goal.

CLEAR goal example: The team will use their individual skills to launch a new product by next year, with monthly reports on their progress.

Whether at work or in a school project, CLEAR goals are best for ensuring everyone is contributing to their fullest potential.

Ready to get started on achieving your goals? Check out our infographic for a quick summary of everything you need to know:

Sources: FastCompany | WikiHow | HappyProject | Self Taught Coders |



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