Many of us enter a new year resolving to make improvements in our lifestyle and habits. We often have the best luck achieving these goals through small steps. Eat a little less. Work out a little more. Spend a little less time parked in front of a screen. Spend a little more time moving. Getting financially fit happens much the same way – you can reach your big financial goals by taking small, doable steps and celebrating those victories along the way.
Five 2020 New Year Resolutions to get Financially Fit:
1. Save more: Set a small goal and look for incremental ways to save. Vow to eat out once a week, instead of multiple nights. Pack your child’s lunch. Menu planning will keep grocery shopping on track and prevent last-minute take-outs.
2. Spend less: Take small steps. Do you really need the most expensive data plan for your cell phone? Do you watch more TV or streaming video? Could you do without one or the other? Are you buying books or using the library? You could be spending extra money on services you don’t need or use.
3. Pay down your debt: Identify a loan or credit card you can pay off. Start with the debt that has the highest interest rate and pay it off first. Celebrate that small victory and move on to the next debt to pay down.
4. Stick to a budget: If you don’t have a budget or a plan, it’s difficult to control your spending. See where your money goes.
5. Protect your income: This is a step many ignore. Ask yourself what may financially change in 2020. A new job? A baby? Make sure your income and assets are protected if something happens to you. Revisit your life insurance policy to see if your family has enough to cover daily expenses like childcare and the housing payment.
Income protection and financial security for your family should be key parts of any financial plan. Being smart with money requires discipline in the day-to-day and planning for contingencies. So, as you move into this new year, consider both and take small steps towards your bigger financial goals.
This article is for informational purposes only, you should not construe any information provided as legal, tax, investment, or financial advice. No reader should make any investment decision without first consulting his or her own financial advisor and conducting his or her own research and due diligence.
TRN00003; Rev. 2-2020