Like most resolutions, the financial ones we make at the start of each new year are easier to make than they are to stick to. Many times, the resolutions we choose when we are feeling positive and excited about a fresh start soon feel like huge mountains that we are simply unable to climb.
However, don’t lose hope. There are a number of relatively simple but effective ways to make sure you achieve your financial resolutions and enjoy the benefits. And we’ve got three basic but powerful ones for you to try.
Ways to make your financial resolutions stick
1. One thing at a time
When a resolution is too big or the list of things that need to be done is too long, you might feel ill-equipped for the task at hand or overwhelmed by all that is required. This can lead to inertia or failure right at the start. Rather, pick one financial goal at a time and work on that one – spend time making it specific, breaking down and detailing each step that will get you to your goal, and turning the goal into something manageable on a daily basis. For example, don’t say ‘I will be debt free by the end of the year’ – that’s too vague and, if you have large amounts of debt, it might be unrealistic as well. Pick a specific debt and plan to pay it off within the year. If you finish early, move on to the next debt.
2. Get automated
Want to save more regularly? Pump up your investment amounts? Put aside money for a special holiday? Whatever your goal, when it comes to saving money, automation can be a wonderful tool. Set up an automatic debit order on your account and ensure that you are ‘forced’ (without actually having to do anything) to save every month. This way, you give yourself a chance to forget that the saving is happening or to overlook the commitment you’ve made in favour of a short-term gain like an impulse purchase. Automation allows for in-built discipline, putting your most important goals first.
3. Get a helping hand
If you struggle to stick to your resolutions, tell someone who will hold you accountable for what you have planned. Be it your trusted financial adviser or a close friend, your accountability partner can help you to stay on track when you feel your resolve wavering. Offer to return the favour and commit to meeting up on a regular basis and discussing your progress, challenges, and successes. Tasks like these are often achieved much more easily when shared.
Do you need expert advice on how best to manage your wealth in 2018? Our team at TRG can help. Whether you need savings or investment guidance, help putting together a financial plan for your future, or reviewing your financial goals, as independent financial advisers, we can help you manage, protect, and grow your wealth over time.