For many of us January 1st signifies a fresh start. We begin the New Year full of excitement and optimism. If good financial health is one of your New Year’s Resolutions, let the three R’s be your guide.

Review – Reassess – Renew

1.  Review not only your financial failures from the past year, but also your successes – you can learn from both. 

a.  Were the goals that you set for yourself realistic and attainable?
b.  Did you map out an action plan, specifying the steps required to obtain your goal?
c.  If you successfully achieved a past financial goal, analyze the situation and duplicate it. Whatever you were doing had positive results, so apply those same behaviors to your new financial goals. 

i. At the time of this accomplishment were you receiving emotional support and guidance from a family member or a friend?
ii. Did you attach a reward to the success of achieving the goal?
iii. Were you budgeting at the time? 

2. Reassess your goals. Take an inventory of your current financial situation, and make a list of your short and long term financial goals. Create specific, measurable, and realistic financial goals, and detail how you are going to achieve them.

a. Itemize all of your liabilities and assets. With this list you can form a realistic plan to pay down your debts, and create a higher net worth.
b. Make a comprehensive action plan with a timeline.
c. Make a list of potential obstacles, and alternative solutions. If you anticipate the obstacle, you can avoid a potential setback.

3. Renew your goals, and renew your belief in yourself. With your new focused action plan, and some patience, a financially fit future is possible. Remember that setbacks are a normal part of the process. When this happens, focus on the positive progress you have made up until this point, and commit to getting back on track.

~ Charlie Peet ~