New Year, New Thing: The Secret to Keeping Financial Resolutions

Kelly Cox is kicking off our New Year, New Thing series!  Kelly is a blogger and budget coach and has been featured at Money Saving Mom.  Welcome, Kelly!

This whole budgeting thing is simpler than you think if you have the right tools.Anyone else ever had a New Year’s Resolution “financial flop?” About mid-February I’ve often wondered what happened to those excited, grandiose plans of mine that included saving money, giving more, avoiding debt and the like! I’ve tried all sorts of tactics to KEEP my resolutions. Often, to no avail…

However, our family’s budget ended up being the secret to pull of my financial hopes and dreams.

This whole budgeting thing is simpler than you think if you have the right tools. (I can help with that part!)
A budget is simply a plan. Proverbs 16:3 says,

“Commit to the Lord whatever you do and he will establish your plans.” (NIV)

I find much encouragement in that verse and know that with Him, you and I can do this budget thing!

This year, I want to offer a NEW approach to you. But first, let me be a little transparent. In the past, I’ve created lists, set goals and used a planner to help with my financial goals. I’ve jotted notes down in my prayer journal and prayed over the details of my resolutions. These tactics showed good effort and worked for some goals. However, I found that I would quickly lose interest, forget my goal or feel like I was “going it alone.”

I realized that a change in my methods was necessary.

Today, I want to share my 4 part system that will help you to attain financial success this year!

1. Create a Budget

A BUDGET (and the Lord!) helped me to become a better financial steward of the resources God has given me. Who wouldn’t want to give more and live without the burden of debt? Luke 1:37 says,

“For with God, nothing is impossible. (NKJV)”

Creating a budget may seem like a daunting task; however, a plan in place will show you what you actually spend. A budget allows you to manage your money rather than your money managing you! I’m able to save, give and spend more strategically since we created our budget.

2. Accountability

I’m a big believer in accountability. Ecclesiastes 4:9 says that

“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work.” (NIV)

What about asking someone to hold you accountable for your money goals this year? If you are married and have a financial resolution, perhaps you and your spouse could hold each other accountable. If you are single, share your goal with a friend or family member and set up checkpoints to discuss your progress.

You may even need to consult a budget coach or financial planner to hold you accountable. Accountability often provides you with prayerful support and encouragement along the way. We never plan to fail but often we fail to plan. An accountability partner helps to keep you on track with your goals.

3. Visual Reminders

Does the phrase out of sight, out of mind sound familiar?

As I’ve tried to “pull off” my resolutions, I realized that I needed a visual reminder. For example, I found that a note, verse, quote or picture of what I’m working toward should be in a prominent place for me to see often. Consider putting these reminders on the visor of your car, the kitchen window, bathroom mirror or even your computer screen.

Keep the goal in your line of sight so that it stays fresh in your mind. Also, set tasks in your phone or email to remind you of your specific steps that you need to work on. A visual reminder helps me to not lose sight of the big picture!

4. Small Rewards

A reward system makes goal setting more fun. Try to set a few benchmarks as you work toward your financial goals with incentives to keep you inspired. When you hit these mini objectives, then reward yourself! Do you want to go for coffee with a friend, try a new restaurant or buy a new dress? Enjoy something that is reasonable, fits within your budget plan and fun for you! These treats will be a blessing, you’ll feel encouraged and a little reward will spur you onward.

I’ve got several financial resolutions for 2016. I plan to incorporate this 4 part system, prayer and hard work to pull off my resolutions. I’m excited to see what the Lord has in store. Happy New Year and many blessings to you!

RESOURCES

Don’t know how to write a budget? No worries, Kelly can help! She offers Budget Coaching Sessions that include an amazing Excel budget takeaway tool that’s ready to be implemented immediately.

Check out the New Year, New Thing page for all of the posts in this series!

KC PicKelly is a Christ follower, blessed wife, mom to be and a lover of all things home. She blogs over at www.KellyCoxAtHome.com about her journey at home and passion for debt-free living. She hopes to encourage others in that goal, while sharing tips on how to manage and enjoy all things that make up HOME!

If interested in your own personal coaching session, then contact Kelly at kelly@kellycoxathome.com to set up an online meeting and receive a budget spreadsheet that calculates and “thinks” for you!

Connect with Kelly on  Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter.

RESPOND

Do you have financial resolutions or goals for this year? What challenges do you think you’ll face?

Linking up with Susan Mead at #DanceWithJesus

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4 thoughts on “New Year, New Thing: The Secret to Keeping Financial Resolutions

  1. This is one of the things that I will be working during this new year! Even when I don’t have resolutions, I do want to become a better administrator when it comes to my financial life. And this post have helped me to have an idea in how I can start. Great post, worth sharing! Blessings!

    • It’s not something that comes naturally to a lot of us. That’s why I am grateful for people like Kelly who can help and guide!

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