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Happy New Year my frugal friends! It’s 2018 and we’re ready to start off the fresh year with lofty resolutions to boot. We resolve to lose weight, make more money, become debt-free, and be more organized. Well, these are usually mine each year, but you get the drift. These are pretty high up on the common board of resolution pickings.
But what happens mid-February?
We lose focus and motivation and the resolutions we were so hopeful would change are lives have soon vanished into thin air.
That’s because resolutions never work. Ever! Their faulty by design. When you write down a resolution, you tend to write down an idea. This idea is usually broad, like “losing weight” or “saving more money”. It doesn’t have enough specificity to make it realistic.
Resolutions never come with a deadline. We usually say “I plan on losing weight this year”. Where is the accountability to make the resolution a success?
Get where I’m going?
Let’s do something different this year. Let’s make GOALS, not Resolutions. Let’s set real milestones and smash them down with success!
Here’s how we’re going to do it.
Step 1- Set the Goal and Be Specific
Be very specific when you’re setting your goal. If you want to lose weight, write down how many pounds you want to lose in total. If you want to save more money, write down how much you plan on saving per month or per week.
Step 2- Set a timeline or a deadline
It’s not enough to say that you want to reach a goal. Say out loud or write down a specific date. For instance, one of my goals is to lose 50 pounds by July. I also want to build an emergency fund and save enough money to fund 6 months of expenses by the end of the year. Having a deadline in place puts enough pressure to get me and keep me going.
Step 3- Set your Actions
A lot of times, we forget this part completely. How in the world can we reach a goal if we don’t specify how we will reach it? So, make sure to write down 3-5 actions you plan to take to reach your goal. Back to the weight loss, I plan on limiting my carbs per day and eating 3 more fruits/veg per day. I also plan on working out 3 times a week for 30 minutes each time.
To save more money, I’ve already started with stopping my fast food habit and cooking more at home. I’ve also started using only cash for groceries, so I don’t overspend. These actions will help me reach my goal.
The actions you set for yourself will create the roadmap you need to reach your goal and make it easier to attain it.
Step 4- Enlist a Buddy
We think that if we set a goal, we have to completely do it on our own. But, I tell ya, it’s much easier to enlist a buddy to the cause. If someone else you know struggles with the same thing or wants to achieve the same goal, it is MUCH easier to do it together. You will motivate each other and help the other during weak moments.
Step 5- Track your progress
This is one of the most important steps in the process. Without tracking, you can’t determine if you are on the right path. If I said I want to lose 50 pounds by July, that means I need to lose about 7 pounds per month. So, at the end of each month, I need to weigh myself and see if I’m on track with my goal.
Step 6- Re-adjust
Resolutions are abandoned so early because we often make them too rigid to reach. If you’re tracking your goal and find that the outcome is not what you expected, it’s okay to re-adjust and breakdown your goal into more attainable parts.
Re-adjusting means you haven’t given up and that’s the most important thing. You may reach your goal later rather than sooner, but you have a better chance of reaching your goal rather than ditching it altogether.
In the spirit of Step 4, I’d love to be enlisted as your buddy. You’re also invited to join my Build Your Wealth Challenge by adding your email to the side bar and be part of the awesome group! And I promise, I won’t give up on you!
You are also welcome to join my exclusive Facebook group called The Frugal Converts. Our group members share awesome money-saving tips and we learn from one another. Hope to see you there!
Until next time my frugal friend,