- Connect with your money by setting specific goals and putting together a holistic budget that includes buckets for saving, spending and giving.
- Be Conscientious, says my friend and money maven, Barbara Stanny, by "diligently tracking every financial transaction, whether a purchase or withdrawal, large or small, or by cash, check, credit or debit." Barbara suggests using an empty check register for this, but you could always use spreadsheets and online resources if you want to get fancy. What's important is getting it down in writing.
- Stay Conscious of your progress by taking time daily - or at least weekly - to review your "actuals" against your "plan". Over time, you will see patterns in how and where you use your money, which can help you make even smarter decisions going forward.
- Compare how other people are handling their money by tapping into resources like bundle.com, which offers a free comprehensive collection of spending and saving data. This can help you think more carefully about how you are putting your hard-earned cash to work.
- Create a "virtuous cycle" by rewarding yourself when you reach certain milestones. For example, if you stay on track for 30 days, you will treat yourself to a manicure. Or, when you reach the 90-day mark, you will go for a massage. As with most things, carrots often achieve more than sticks. And, not surprising, a positive outlook can make all the difference.
So, here's to a year of budget bliss!
Women & Co. is a membership service that provides financial education and related resources intended for informational purposes only. No feature of the membership shall constitute an offer or solicitation with respect to the purchase or sale of any security. Women & Co. makes no guarantee about the accuracy of information provided by any third party. You should consult with your personal advisors about your particular situation.
Citigroup Inc. and its affiliates do not provide tax or legal advice. To the extent that this material or any attachment concerns tax matters, it is not intended to be used and cannot be used by a taxpayer for the purpose of avoiding penalties that may be imposed by law. Any such taxpayer should seek advice based on the taxpayer's particular circumstances from an independent tax advisor.
The views expressed in Women & Co. educational and related publications constitute the judgment of the author(s) as of the publication date and are subject to change without notice.
INVESTMENT PRODUCTS: NOT FDIC INSURED · NO BANK GUARANTEE · MAY LOSE VALUE