Yes. You read that right. Don’t bother setting any goals in January.
I recently read in Forbes that over 92% of people who set New Year’s Resolutions in January don’t succeed in achieving those goals. With only an 8% chance that you’ll beat the statistics, I say don’t bother.
I know it’s blasphemy!
Why is it so hard to keep resolutions? Well, part of the reason is that the months leading up to this “new beginning” are filled with so many distractions. You have holidays, family, decorating, shopping, parties, cooking and maybe even a Hallmark movie marathon. Yep that was me… By the time January comes around, you’re impossibly overwhelmed and tired so it’s no wonder that people don’t succeed.
But, just because you don’t set goals or make resolutions, that doesn’t mean that January is a waste. Quite the opposite in fact. Use the month of January to reflect. Take a pause and look at the previous year. Celebrate your successes and take note of where you could have done better.
Use the first 31 days of the year to get organized. Gather all of your receipts together. Revisit your budget and make adjustments as needed. Get your current credit score so you can see where you start out for the year and measure along the way as you make progress.
Look at your spending habits. Don’t be afraid. It’s just a number. You have to take a look at it to know what you need to change for improvement.
Once you’ve had a chance to reflect, organize and revise, then start to set your goals for the new year. Set reasonable goals that you can achieve. Look for ways to insert milestones so that you can stay on track easier as the months tick by.
The bottom line is that you don’t need to be like everyone else who rushes into January overwhelmed and feeling like they have to lose 100 lbs and pay off $100K in 30 days. Goals and resolutions made with this kind of emotion are generally not effective. Remember to think of your year as a marathon rather than a sprint.