Financial New Year's Resolutions
It's that time again! A New Year is upon us, and the urge to set goals makes its way to the forefront of our minds. No desire could be better suited for investors, so if you are in the mood to plan, now is the time to put that feeling to good use.

Take Action

If 2008 left you too shellshocked to do anything at all when the New Year rolled around, now is the time to shake off your fatigue and get motivated. Time is a major factor in the success or failure of any financial plan, so putting it to work on your behalf is a critical component in your efforts to achieve your goals.

Learn From The Past

It's an introspective time of year, so look back on decisions you made in your portfolio in recent years. How was your portfolio positioned? How did you react when markets fell? How did you react when they continued to fall? Are you ready if it happens again? Now that you know what can happen and how you will respond, position your portfolio accordingly.

Commit To Saving More

No one ever reaches retirement wishing they had less money. The beginning of the year is a great time to increase the percentage of your salary that goes into your employer-sponsored retirement savings program. Some firms even offer a service that automatically increases your savings amount each year. (Find out what you need for retirement and how to get it using tools and investing techniques detailed in Fundamentals Of A Successful Savings Program.)

Commity To Spending Less

We all spend too much in one way or another. The doomed economic model that relied on consumers spending themselves into ever-deeper levels of debt revealed its flaws. It's not your job to bail out greedy CEOs by pumping up stock prices with your deficit spending. Put your own house in order first.


Healthy people spend less on medical services. Fit and trim people fare better in job interviews. Do yourself a favor and make a commitment to fitness.

Appreciate What You Have

Mortgage defaults are at record levels. The unemployment rate is in the double digits. Healthcare costs are out of control. If you are doing okay, take a few minutes to appreciate your position.

Share It

Many people have faced considerable challenges from the economic downturn. And don't forget our furry friends. Animals have suffered greatly from the economic downturn as their owners could not afford to feed them. If you can find a little breathing room in your budget, commit to providing charitable support to your favorite cause in 2010 - a food bank, animal shelter or other charity of your choice. It will help make the New Year a little bit brighter for those in need.

Generosity may be its own reward, but some charitable giving also provides personal tax benefits. Learn more in Deducting Your Donations.

comments powered by Disqus
Trading Center