Are you feeling a little remorse about the money you spent over the holidays? There is an online meme where a parent jokes about taking all of the holiday presents back because the children are behaving. Isn’t that how it is with the things we buy sometimes? They don’t produce the expected result or function quite as we would like and we want to go back in time. We were full of hope when we bought these things and it is only later that the regret sets in. We like to believe that the new year brings a fresh start and wipes the slate clean but we all know that if we have debt and poor money management skills, then those will carry over with us into the new year. Once the optimism of it being a new year fades, some people will face the reality that they overdid it during the holidays. But there is no need to be sad about this. The good news is that even if the old debt, unwise payment plans, or questionable purchases still exist in the new year, we have a chance to start fresh, treating ourselves and our resources differently. It may be hard to believe but there can be a sense of accomplishment and even joy in buckling down and really working towards financial freedom. Can you commit to one new money management habit per week? That will look different for different people so here are some ideas:
- Check your account balances once a week Bring your lunch to work (at least) once a week.
- Leave a potential online purchase in the virtual shopping cart overnight and reevaluate in the morning.
- Plan errands so you make fewer trips and use less money for gas/mass transit/car services.