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How to achieve your New Year’s Resolutions (financially speaking)

It is incredible. Another year has come and (almost) gone. 

Many people want to lose weight and invest more money for retirement or children’s education – especially if there is a lingering sense of guilt due to previous failed attempts. 

The question is, how can you keep to your financial new year’s resolutions when few people follow through in reality?

I, for one, struggled for years to follow through, before I found tactics that work. 

Here are some ideas to keep to your New Years Resolutions and goals 

1.Start before the new year.

Let’s face it, many of us have more time around Christmas. Whilst December tends to be busy until the Christmas season, and Christmas and Boxing Day are family time, many of us have a lot of free time between December 27-31. That is a great time to complete the paperwork to get something started. 

How great would it feel to know you have already, at least partially, achieved your resolutions on New Year’s Eve?

2. Start small.

80% of life is about showing up, as per the legendary quote below. Even if you start small, but begin now, you will benefit more than going big later on.

This is due to financial compounding, which Albert Einstein described as the Eight Wonder of the World. Therefore, you don’t need to invest that much money to get wealthy investing over time.

One reason why starting small is so powerful is that many new investors have irrational fears about the stock markets and other issues. Actually seeing how the system works is reassuring. Most of my clients become reassured after actually getting started. 

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Source: Quote Fancy

3. Spend less time with toxic people.

Spending more time with people who want to succeed financially will be a great benefit. In much the same way that we tend to get fitter if we spend more time with healthier people, the same exists with financial fitness. 

4. Limit your resolutions.

It is better to have a small number of realistic goals than too many. If you choose one or two very specific goals and measure them, then you are more likely to achieve them. Once you achieve a goal, then it makes more sense to set more ambitious ones. 

5. Automate the process

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How to achieve your New Year's Resolutions (financially speaking) 4

This could be my biggest tip of all, alongside getting the process started before new year. Most people, including me, have failed in the past due to relying on will power alone to accomplish goals.

Going to the gym is easy on January 2, but not so easy on February 2, long after the promises you made to yourself have been broken.

You can negate this willpower issue in the financial domain by automating the process of contributing towards a retirement, child’s education or pension plan.

You can do this by setting up a direct debit investment one day after you are paid. This is especially good for people who struggle with overspending.

Let’s face it, most people who are bad with money tend to pay the mortgage for a simple reason – it comes out automatically and then you need to fit your spending around it.

Likewise, when it comes to retirement or children’s education, if $500, $2,000, or whatever you can afford every month, comes out just after payday, you will likely keep it going. 

6. Read more.

Billionaire Mark Cuban spends hours a day reading, and some people estimate that Warren Buffett spends the majority of his day reading information. What is more, these days you can utilise podcasts and audible. This is perfect for those of us who struggle to read for hours. 

7. Switch off the media more.

Or, at least the sensationalist media. The media speaks about doom and gloom, and market crashes, every single day or every single year. It is their job and it puts bums on seats.

The problem is, countless academic studies have shown that we can’t find the best time to come into the market. Therefore, time in the market beats timing the market.

One of the most incredible client experiences this year was the event with Shark Tank Judge Kevin O’Leary, where he said he failed to time the stock market. If a man worth close to half a billion can’t time the market, neither can you. Just get in and stay invested. 

If you are looking to achieve your New Year’s Resolution of saving and investing more this year, you can email me – advice@adamfayed.com – or use this form

Pained by financial indecision? Want to invest with Adam?

Financial Planner - Adam Fayed

Adam is an internationally recognised author on financial matters, with over 744.2 million answer views on Quora.com, a widely sold book on Amazon, and a contributor on Forbes.

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