It is the start of a new year, and people around the world have set new goals for 2023, but will they reach them or will they lose motivation in a few weeks?
Matt and Joel, hosts of How to Money, want to make sure you have the tools you need to keep that New Year’s resolution (or goal) you have set for yourself. To help, they brought in friend, professor, and author Katy Milkman to advise listeners on how to attain their ambitions. While the goal of this episode (and podcast overall) is to help listeners with their finances, the tips Milkman gives throughout the episode can also be applied to other areas as well.
“We’re in this fresh start period that you (Milkman) talk about where a lot of people are ready, willing, and they’re trying to move in the right direction when it comes to making change,” said Matt. “But how do we make sure that it sticks around and isn’t just a failed attempt a few weeks from now?”
The burnout from a new goal or resolution can come soon after it is set. That’s why Milkman recommends the fresh start approach. Treat holidays, birthdays, the start of a new month, or even a new week as an opportunity to reaffirm the goal. This helps keep the motivation alive and helps you move closer to reaching your objective. However, this isn’t the only thing you need to keep in mind when working towards a targeted change.
“Ideally when you want to pursue a goal, first of all you define a plan,” she said. “The plan isn’t just, ‘I’m going to go to the gym once,’ right? The plan is ‘I want to do this regularly.’”
Having a plan makes the goal real, more attainable. Joel suggests using a calendar app to send updates to your when it is time to make that weekly budget, go to gym, clean your basement, or whatever you might be working towards this year. To make things a bit more serious, Milkman suggests setting a financial consequence if you fail to stick to your plan.
“Ideally you are thinking about accountability,” she said. “Can you create consequences, so if you fail to follow through it isn’t just a shoulder shrug, but you are really going to feel crummy about that. The more the consequence, the more likely you won’t procrastinate or give up on yourself.”
Think along the lines of a swear jar or losing a bet. Leaving money on the table makes things a bit more serious. It can also serve as a reward once you’ve completed your goal.
Checkout “Making Money Changes That Stick with Katy Milkman” to hear the full conversation. How to Money launches two episodes a week on the iHeartRadio app, but the financial content doesn’t stop there. Matt and Joel release extra resources for every episode, send out a weekly newsletter, and moderate a How to Money Facebook group.
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