New year’s resolutions do not work. In fact, statistics shows that by week 6 of the new year (that is the second week in February if you are tracking it) most people will go back to their routine and 80% of resolutions will fall apart. If saving money is one of your New Year’s resolutions, then you have a 6 weeks window to make it work. After that, the odds are against you!
HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!!
Of course, everyone wants to save more money. Nobody wakes up one day and says, I want to spend more today, or, I want to have less money! Most people want to save more and be financially independent. So, the question is: what separates the ones that make it a reality to the ones that live in a financial fantasy? the answer is simple: a budget!!
A budget is the same thing as a New Year’s resolution. If you only wish it to happen, you have 6 weeks to make it work, before you go back to your normal financial habits. Click To Tweet However, for a budget to work, you need to stick to it for more than 6 weeks. To do so, it is imperative that you understand three key principles.
On this article, we at Saving For Hope wanted to explain these three key principles that are at work behind every budget and why they are so important for you and your family.
First, you need to understand that behind any budget there is action. The truth is a budget won’t happen by itself or by mistake. Budgeting takes action, takes intentionality and movement. One the biggest New year’s resolution is to lose weight. On the other hand, the one New Year’s resolution that is broken the fastest is, you guess it, to lose weight. Why is that? It is because most people won’t take the proper actions to make it happen. Exercising more, eating healthy, and eating less does not happen by accident, it takes work and it takes action. The same is true for a budget. You can’t do it without doing it. January is a great month to start something new! Start a budget this January and 2019 will be a different year.
Second, it takes accountability to make a budget work. Statistics shows that people who have a community that keeps them accountable, are more likely to achieve goals (big or small). Financial goals are not excluded, and the same principle applies to a budget. The problem is that most people are so secretive about money and money habits these days. Most likely because they know they are not making the right financial decisions, and don’t want people to find out. But a community (friend, family member, etc.) to keep you accountable is a good idea to help you stay on a budget for more than 6 weeks. Ask a friend or family member to keep you accountable. If you have a spouse, try to have your spouse on the same page. We have an article that can help you be on the same financial page, click HERE.
Third, it takes time for a budget to work. 6 weeks of diet and exercise won’t give you the body of an athlete! 6 weeks of financial exercise won’t take you to the next level. The 6 weeks rule is a good start, but it is not enough. For a budget to reach it’s potential: helping you pay off debt, save and get ahead financially, it needs more time. It needs to become like second nature to you and your family. One of our favorite phrases here is: time is a commodity, use it wisely, because it captures the idea that time is a key ingredient to achieve goals in life. If your goal is to save more, or pay off those unwanted credit cards, then you need to learn this principle and start using and managing your time correctly.
Of course, we have talked about budgets in the past, and for us at Saving For Hope, this is nothing new. But you do need to take a pause and think if the financial situation you are in now is worth it long term. If that is your goal, good for you!! You don’t need to read any longer. But if you are like the rest of us, that wants in 2019 to be in a better financial situation than we were last year, then you need a budget immediately. Click To Tweet Here is a great article that explains why a budget is so critical, and the three most common excuses people make not to budget. Finally, if you are ready to start a budget, click here on this action plan that will show you how to get there step by step.
If you want to get ahead financially, a budget is essential. For a budget to work, you need to stick to it, and to do so, you need to understand why it is important and have a community to keep you accountable. Start on the right track this 2019! Enjoy!!