Is it just me, or do the news stories on the economy sound especially breathless these days?

“Inflation just jumped the most in years”
“Governments gorge on record debt”
“Analysts expect earnings to be great”

And those are just a random sampling from today.

Yes, the economy has been through the wringer, thanks to the pandemic. And yes, millions of workers – especially women – have seen their lives upended as a result. It’s also true that by many measures, the economy is rebounding.

But if you, like me, are getting whiplash from reading about gorging, jumping, and all the rest, it’s time to take a deep breath.

Flurries are just one part of snowfall, at least if you live in the New York area as I do. Chances are, when the winter is over, slow and steady snows will have added more to the ground cover than the flurries, dramatic though they may be.

Similarly, there is short-term news and there are long-term plans, and you will feel better if you separate the two. Nowhere is this truer than with our finances.

Now is a great time to step back and think about how you want your money to serve you going forward. Your priorities may have shifted during the worst of the economic shutdown. You may have discovered that you want different work going forward. You may have decided to make changes in your lifestyle. This is your moment to consider those things and reflect on how your money can help you live in tune with your values and goals.

When you give yourself that reflective time, it becomes much easier to make a financial plan that will last. Do you need to save more? Set up an automated transfer of a manageable amount into your savings account so that every time you get paid, you set some aside for your goals. Do you need to spend less? Track where your money is going and check what you see against your values. It may be easier than you think to notice changes you can make.

If you would like extra resources to help you refine your financial plan, I’ve created a resource list with lots of helpful tools, videos, and articles right here on my website. Help yourself!

You may also decide that you want help with your planning and goal setting. In the coming weeks, I’ll be announcing my new financial wellness program for women, and you’ll be among the first to hear the details.

In the meantime, remember:

At the end of the day, flurries usually do not amount to much.

Now, go enjoy that July sunshine!