The new year is the perfect break in the calendar that allows us to take off the old and put on the new. It’s like turning the page. It’s a new chapter. It’s a new book! You can’t change the past, but you can change the future.
One way we can make a change is to set new goals, or the ancient ritual of making New Year’s resolutions.
We make resolutions to accomplish goals, and to improve ourselves. In the financial realm, wouldn’t it feel great to resolve to and get debt under control, save more for retirement, get a head start on taxes, or finally review those health and life insurance options?
We get a sense of satisfaction when we “check that box.” So how can we increase our chances of success? Follow-through is critical, and these tips will help you not only set, but attain your goals in the new year.
What resolutions are important to you? Set goals that are meaningful and within reach. Many set worthy goals, but they are too lofty or too difficult to accomplish. Traveling the world may be exciting, but it requires massive planning. And, honestly, it’s vague. A healthier lifestyle is a good resolution, too. But what does it mean to you? Does it mean working out or losing weight? If it’s working out, then what, when, and how often? Be specific and get granular. Do you want to start a new hobby? Have you always wanted to paint? Check with local resources in your area and sign up for a class by the end of the month. It’s specific, and you have attached a date to your resolution.
Don’t Choose Too Many Resolutions
Choose too many resolutions and you’ll likely end up accomplishing little. Instead, pick one or two. Elizabeth Saunders writes in the Harvard Business Review, “Because there aren’t usually instant negative effects, you’ll tend to look at these goals as ‘extras.’ And since most of us don’t have much time or energy for a lot of extras, you’ll increase your likelihood of success by picking just one or two resolutions.” Agreed.
Write Down Your Goals
Psychology professor Dr. Gail Matthews, at the Dominican University in California, led a study on goal-setting with nearly 270 participants. The results? You are 42% more likely to achieve your goals if you write them down. Writing down your resolutions has a two-fold effect: it forces clarity, and it is motivating.
Implement a Plan
For example, let’s take something simple. You want to get your house cleaned by the beginning of spring. You have your resolution, you’ve written it down, and you have a date. It may seem like a daunting task. But what if you were to schedule one room each day, or two rooms a week? Instead of always focusing on a far-away peak, you are taking one step at a time, and your goal is now manageable.
Recognize Small Wins
Writing down your small successes allows you to see your progress.
Hold Yourself Accountable
Whatever your resolution may be, it helps to have an accountability partner—preferably someone you look up to. Besides, you can encourage each other.
There will be an inherent sense of satisfaction when you have achieved your New Year’s resolution, but why not give yourself a prize, a reward when you have checked that box? It’s an accomplishment, and you deserve to celebrate it.
You won’t be perfect. At times, life will get in the way. That’s ok. Just keep coming back. You may not accomplish your resolutions right away, but with persistence, you’ll see success.
Would you like to discuss your 2022 financial goals with us? Reach out for a consultation today!
Disclosure: The opinions expressed herein are those of Elevate Wealth Advisory (“EWA”) and are subject to change without notice. EWA reserves the right to modify its current investment strategies and techniques based on changing market dynamics or client needs. This should not be considered investment advice or an offer to sell any product. EWA is an independent investment adviser registered under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, as amended. Registration does not imply a certain level of skill or training. More information about EWA, including our investment strategies, fees and objectives can be found in our ADV Part 2, which is available upon request.