Happy New Year! We are still in a pandemic but there is so much to look forward to in 2022. If you need inspiration to get started, think of all the things you accomplished in 2021. Think of all the No’s that you turned into Yes’ and obstacles that you successfully navigated. Again, all in the middle of a pandemic. Let’s continue this trend of achievement by laying down the groundwork for another successful year. Below are 5 New Year’s resolutions to change your finances.
The simple act of decluttering can have a profound effect on both your mental health and financial health. By removing items that you no longer use or want, you make room for better things that can serve your current wants and needs. The space around you has a powerful impact on your mental health. Decluttering will force you to let go of things that no longer serve or inspires you. In terms of finance, you’ll notice how much less things you need to be happy. You’ll spend more time expressing gratitude rather than envy. You’ll also no longer feel the need to keep up with the Jones. Happiness and gratitude will lead to less spending and thus increase your savings. Add decluttering to your list of New Year’s resolutions to change your finances.
Learn A New Skill
Life is a journey spent learning lessons. It can be so much more fulfilling if it is spent pursuing a passion. If you’re passionate about something, maybe your time would be better spent learning it. Or better yet, turn your passion into a skill that you can then turn into a lucrative income stream. First, determine what you’re good at. Then, determine what you like doing. Combine the two and this should give you some idea of what you’d like to pursue. Once you know this, research what skills you need to be successful and how to go about getting the right training from the right people.
A good example is, I decided in that 2022 I want to start my own business. I’m good at auditing and I like data analytics. By combining two, it was clear that Business Consulting would be the right direction for me. The skills I need to pursue this passion are a good business acumen and proficiency in a business intelligence tool. I already have experience using Microsoft PowerBI so this is the tool I’ll be using. To increase my proficiency, I enrolled in courses and webinars. My objective is to master this skill so that others will pay me to provide insight into their business.
Reading is proven to be the best way to broaden the mind. It is also a great form of relaxation. If you’re unsure what to read about pick something that will hold your interest, so you actually finish the book. Read about how to care for your physical and mental health. Read about the history of the U.S. stock market and how it changed over time. Or better yet, read a story. Take an hour out of your day to immerse yourself in the imaginary world of a fictional story about a complex and deviant protagonist. Whatever subject you choose, reading will expand your mind and unlock untapped creativity that you may not even know you had. These days you don’t even have to leave the house to find a good book. There are eBooks available on a wide variety of platforms. My personal favorite is the Amazon Kindle as I always have a diverse library with me.
Reading can be a very inexpensive activity. If you’re on a restricted budget, you could join a local library and borrow their books for free. Libraries are quite sophisticated these days and offer audio books as a part of their collection. Expanding your knowledge and creativity by reading more is a great New Year’s resolution idea to change your finances.
It’s amazing how people underestimate the impact their health has on their finances. A Harvard study found that almost 46% of bankruptcies are related to outstanding medical conditions. You can lesson the probability of this terrible fate by simply living a healthier and active lifestyle. Insurance may lessen the medical bill, but there are instances where, after years of paying premiums the insurance company does not cover the service. Bankruptcy is a hard financial tumble to recover from. Your credit score will decrease, and the bankruptcy will be on your credit report for years. Make self-care a priority this year and be more active.
There are some illnesses that can be contracted regardless of the person’s health. However, your ability to recover from that illness dramatically increases if you had a healthy body in the first place. Being active does not mean going to the gym. It means having more movement in your life. Take a 10 minutes walk during your lunch break, or a 1 hour walk in the park on the weekend. You could even engage in yoga for 15 minutes in the morning before heading out to work. Better yet, join a local swim, tennis or volleyball club. Choose an activity you like and stick to it. Your future self will thank you for it.
First, let me say it is NEVER too late to start investing. Investing has been proven to be the best way to build and maintain wealth. Regardless of how small your initial investment, you’ll soon learn the magic of compound interest. For those of you who do not have the time or skills to select value companies to invest in, Index investing is a great option. You diversify by investing in an Index thus limiting the risks that come with investing, but still have enough exposure to gain great rewards. If you’re interested in learning more about investing check out these two blog posts [What They Don’t Tell Beginner Investors] [Three Lessons From GameStop (GME)].
Rign in the new year by being more dedicated to your goals than ever. New Year’s resolutions will only be achieved if you put in the work to achieve them. You’ve come this far, so I know you can go much, much farther. Start the year off right with these New Year’s resolutions to change your finances.