Anyone who has ever made a New Year's resolution to save more money can tell you how difficult it is to stay on track for more than a few weeks. It's hard to motivate yourself to take on extra work hours when you just want to crash on your couch and binge-watch the latest Netflix series.
Setting financial goals is important, but in order to stick to them long-term, you also need habits and systems in place for following through. Implement these four strategies to truly commit to your financial priorities this year:
Setting a big savings goal is great, but it can also be daunting, and potentially even discouraging, when progress comes slower than you anticipate. Break down each of your yearly goals into smaller pieces and manageable next steps.
If you want to pay off a certain amount of debt, for example, break those numbers down into monthly, weekly or daily targets to help make the yearly amounts feel more manageable.
REMEMBER: It's the small steps taken consistently over time that enable the big changes that can transform your financial life.
One of the things that makes sticking with your goals so challenging is the idea of constantly sacrificing to achieve them. But any sacrifice you make or habit you implement is malleable and can be changed at any time.
Try things out and establish a time frame for each strategy. Then, assess whether that strategy is actually worthwhile. For example, maybe you try working every Saturday for a month to see if the extra income is worth the extra day of work. If it is, you can stick with it. If it's not, ditch the extra work. Give yourself permission...