So you haven't been sticking to your resolutions. Here's how to reset and crush the rest of the year

Lindsay VanSomeren, on

Published in Lifestyles

Nearly 9 in 10 Americans (86%) had at least one financial goal going into 2024, according to a recent Bankrate survey. But having a goal and being able to take steps to achieve it are two different things. If you’re one of the millions of people who set New Year’s resolutions every year, especially financial ones, you’re likely familiar with this hamster wheel. You have high hopes in December of making positive changes to your life as soon as the clock strikes midnight, but by the end of January, things have gone awry.

If that sounds familiar, don’t worry — here’s how to make a strong comeback.

Set SMART goals

Maybe you’ve heard about this goal-setting technique, but it’s always a good time for a refresher. SMART goals can ease the process of creating a successful 2024 roadmap.

What is a SMART goal? Rather than having something vague like “save more money” or “read more,” a SMART goal helps you create a path to success.

SMART goals


•Specific: What are you saving money for — an emergency fund? A vacation? A down payment? All of the above? Be specific about why you want to achieve your goal.

•Measurable: How much do you want to save? A total amount, like $10,000? Or maybe a fixed amount per month, like $100? Put real numbers on your goal so you know where to aim.

•Achievable: Thinking about your life, are you actually able to achieve this goal? We all want to save as much as possible, but we need to set goals within our limits. Otherwise, we’re just setting ourselves up for failure. Does your savings goal fit within your budget?

•Relevant: How important is your savings goal? Will it improve your life in a way you’ve previously found lacking? Does it fit in with your long-term picture, or are you simply doing it because you think you should?


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