EASY MONEY

How to crush your New Year’s resolutions all year long

Resolutions are exciting, but sticking it out can also feel challenging. Whether you have the hope to improve your finances or fitness, learn something new, or quit a bad habit, it’ll take persistence to achieve your goal.  Luckily, there are some easy things you can do to make your New Year’s resolution a reality.

Chart a path

When you’re tackling resolutions, mapping out your path to success in advance will keep you motivated throughout the year. What do you have to do every day, week or month to achieve your resolution before next January? Commit your plan to paper by investing in a Ban.do planner or track your progress in an app like Productive, and turn to your map as a source of inspiration when you feel stuck or discouraged. Remember to plan for obstacles: detours are part of the process. Each day is an opportunity to start fresh.

Take it slow

A little bit every day will go a long way.  Want to start meditating? Flip on a free guided Headspace lesson for three minutes each morning and build from there week by week. Learning a new language?  Download Duolingo and practice Spanish for just 5 minutes every day.  Saving for a down payment? Start small by  investing your spare change with Mylo.  Good things take time and just a small consistent effort will add up over time.

Celebrate your success

Keeping yourself motivated and mindful of how far you’ve come is so important. Celebrate the milestones, no matter how big or small. Were you under budget on your grocery shopping this month? Amazing. Did you shave a minute off your 3 km run? That’s huge. There will be many smaller success stories on your way to achieving your end goal, and they deserve recognition.

Another way you can celebrate is to bring your friends and family into your support system with a commitment contract like stickK. Wager friendly bets throughout the year as you work towards a happy and healthier you.  

Consider the cost

It’s vital to think about how much your resolution will cost. If you want to start working out at the gym or finally take that trip to Europe this year, then achieving your resolution won’t be free. Figure out how much you need to spend or save to achieve your goal, and check in every month to make sure you’re making the most of your money.  Unfortunately, 67% of people who sign up for gym memberships don’t use them, but the pre-approved payments will just keep coming! So before you lock yourself into an expensive service, find out if there is a more affordable way to ease into your resolution. (YouTube exercise classes, anyone?)

Invest the difference

If your resolution involves cutting back on something, like smoking or ordering fast food, consider investing the cash that you would’ve spent every week. Imagine a vacation purchased solely with money that would’ve been spent on burgers! You could also use the money you saved to donate to a cause that’s close to your heart.

Automate the process

Achieving your goals isn’t going to be easy, so why not take all the help you can get! Want to save more this year? Setting up a recurring deposit with Mylo will ensure you’re putting money aside every week without having to stress.  Resolving to decrease your screen time? Wean yourself off social media with Space, an app that will hide your social accounts from you when you want to disconnect. Want to learn to cook? Try out a food subscription box: there are always great deals out there for first-time subscribers.

Change doesn’t always happen overnight. If you fall off the resolution wagon,  just dust yourself off and get right back on up there! There’s no reason you have to wait for the next New Year to start again.