With a brand-new year staring us in the face, it’s likely you’ve had a few resolutions cross your mind. You know, things you want to improve, or maybe even something you might want to change completely. Along with exercise and volunteering, one of the top resolutions involves better management of our own personal finances. Here are a few New Year’s resolutions to help you manage your money.
Smart chicks manage their money
When it comes to women and money, the SmartMoneyChicks.com website is a guiding light for females, no matter how financially fit (or not) you might be. To get expert info on matters of money management, I spoke with Andrea Amir, founder and CEO of Smart Money Chicks, who offered her top three guidelines for New Year’s resolutions about money.
Narrow your financial focus to reach your goals
Instead of saying you want to be debt-free, buy a house and max out your 401K, all in the next 12 months, focus on one or two of those resolutions and really work to achieve them. If you achieve one of them, then you can add another one to the mix. Often people get overwhelmed when they are not accomplishing all of them at the same time, so they give up.
Get a money management reality-check
Before you commit to a resolution, take a moment to ensure if it is actually achievable. If so, then take some time to come up with a detailed plan on how you will achieve that resolution. For example, if you want to become debt-free, determine how much debt you actually have. Then decide what steps will you take to start paying the debt off. Will you cut back on going out? Find a second job? What is your plan? Write it down.
Stay accountable to your financial resolutions
Find a friend, family member or even your significant other whom you can share your resolution with. It is really easy to make a resolution, then quit in two weeks if no one knows you had a resolution to begin with. Ask that person to hold you accountable, check in with you and offer support. If your resolution is to cut down on spending, then the people in your support system can remind you of that when you head to the mall for no reason.
Financial success is just a smart plan away
By keeping good records and tracking your success, you will soon find that managing money is much like managing your work duties or even your household chores. Prioritizing and having a set plan are key, and will surely help get you on the fast track to financial stability in 2011.