by Nikki Willhite
Well, it's that time of year again.
Time to take stock of our lives, set some new goals, and make those
often abandoned New Year Resolutions.
If you don't set goals, you probably won't
reach them. Goals are important. So, why is it that New Year
resolutions are so often abandoned?
Perhaps some goals are just too lofty. Others
are not realistic. Sometimes we just don't want it bad enough. However most of
the time it is because the goal does not have an action plan attached to it.
For instance, if one of your goals is to lose
weight next year- just saying you want to do it will probably not work. You need
to have an action plan. In this case, you could resolve that for the first 3
months of the new year you will not eat anything after 8:00 in the evening.
If you do just this one thing, you will lose
weight. If you are able to keep this resolve for 3 months, it will probably
become a habit. Therefore, there is no need to commit yourself to a whole year,
which would seem overwhelming and probably cause you to get discouraged and
Most of us are going to have some kind of a
financial goal for next year, whether it is to pay off bills or save money. When
you set your goals, get as specific as possible.
HERE ARE IDEAS FOR GOALS IN DIFFERENT AREAS:
- Plan on eating beans once a week
- Plan to eat vegetarian twice a week.
- Have a leftover meal once a week
- Experiment with a new recipe once a week.
- Have breakfast once a week for dinner and make your
- Have a soup meal once a week, using your leftover vegetables.
- Put out the piggy bank.
- Call your bank and set
up an automatic transfer from your checking account to a savings account each week.
- Buy a savings bond once a month.
- Call your employer and ask them to decrease your
exemptions so that your paycheck will be smaller, forcing you
to live on less money (and receive a big tax refund). Normally, this isn't a
good idea, but since you can't make any interest in savings accounts right now,
it is a good strategy.
- Set up a thrift store or garage sale schedule.
- Set up a coupon and rebate system.
- Set an amount with your spouse and agree that you
will never exceed it when purchasing anything without
- Decide on a money saving hobby you will take up,
and set the time aside to pursue it.
- Set your schedule to visit the library weekly and check out books
- Ask a friend to share babysitting a couple nights
- Choose one hour a week to organize your home and "stuff."
- Choose one day a month to donate to charity.
- Pick a day to put items up for sale on ebay or Amazon.
Finally, Don't think "resolution" when you think about your New Year's
Resolution. Think "idea." The word resolution is too negative.
You want your idea for next year to improve your life and make it better.
It is fun to take up a new hobby, and you can really getting out once a week
with your spouse.
The end of the year is a good time to review the year and decide if you need to
make some changes. Pick what is most important to you...and just do it.
About the Author: Nikki Willhite,
mother of 3 and an interior design graduate, has been writing and publishing
articles on the topic of
frugal living for over a
decade. Visit her at
- where you will find hundreds of frugal living tips and articles. Frugal
Happy Families- more than just money.