Fear and uncertainty can be big obstacles when it comes to New Year’s resolutions, particularly when it comes to financial goals.
This new year don’t aim for perfection – try setting smaller, more realistic goals that you’re more likely to achieve. It’s easy to fall into all-or-nothing thinking, but remember it’s better to do some than none.
Thinking about your finances and New Year’s resolutions can feel very overwhelming at times, but taking a few small steps can boost your confidence and build some momentum.
Here are seven New Year’s resolutions to consider for this year:
- Identify your goals. Your goals for the future should be the starting point for all financial decisions, so take some time to write them down. Deciding on your goals is the first step toward making a plan to achieve them.
- Organize your financial clutter. Get a handle on where your money is and what you owe, so you have a clear picture of your current finances. Consider using a personal balance sheet template like the “Your personal net worth” section of the Good Money Plan guidebook.
- Prioritize your list of to-dos. Focus on top priorities like reducing expenses, paying down debt and starting to save.
- Tame your budget expectations. If the thought of budgeting makes your palms sweat, choose one area of spending—maybe food, clothing or entertainment—and focus on budgeting and monitoring that. It’s easier to create a useful budget when it’s based on realistic numbers.
- Learn from your past. Review your statements and bills from the past year, then start brainstorming ways to manage your spending this year.
- Ask friends to help motivate you. Peer support and self-help groups can be helpful, so make a commitment with friends to save and regularly share your progress to motivate each other.
- Talk to a professional. Talk to someone at your financial institution who can help you organize your accounts for daily banking, and savings for short and long-term goals. If you bank with Vancity (or want to!), you can set up a meeting with a wealth management professional.