Decades ago, my high school English teacher, Mrs. Vecchioni, used that word to define tenacity.  I liked the description – sticktoittiveness.  It suggested that there was real effort in the quest to achieve the goal.  Somehow, you knew with that description that there would be bumps in the road and the need for determination and perseverance.

Now we are once again in the midst of resolution season.  Once again this year, financial resolutions are topping the list with scores of people committing to saving more or paying down debt.  But, as with most resolutions, remaining committed past the first few weeks of January will require sticktoittiveness…tenacity.

There are ways to set yourself up for success.  Simple acts can help you make the leap from resolution to reality.

Change the routines that lead to overspending. 

  • Buying groceries at Target may be convenient, but do you find yourself tempted to buy things you don’t need?  It may be better to shop for food at the grocery store – with a list of course!
  • Lunch at the food court, can be more affordable than eating at a restaurant, but are you using those last few minutes of your lunch hour tempted by the sales? Eating at the restaurant may end up saving you money – better yet, bring your lunch and save about $1,200 a year.
  • Shop in the morning.  Studies suggest that you will be better able to avoid temptations earlier in the day when you are more rested.

Tell the people around you about your resolution.   Get your friends and family excited about supporting you and your resolution.

  • Getting together for coffee or lunch?  Try meeting at the lake for a walk instead.
  • Redefine girls’ night out and try a get together, like a game night, at home.

Change your gift giving traditions for birthdays and holidays.  Now is the time to throw out the idea of drawing names to exchange gifts in a group for the coming year.

Engage in new activities that will lead to success.

  • Have a gym membership?  Try at class during your lunch hour.  Better yet, bring along a friend for the class, too!
  • Learn to cook.  Make it fun to try new recipes at home.
  • Take up reading.  There is nothing better than getting drawn in by a great book – especially one at no cost from the library! Plus, there are no advertisements or coupon codes to tempt you.

Exercise sticktoittiveness!

You will be tempted and, chances are, you will end up reverting to your old habits every once in a while.  The key is to start fresh the next day, reaffirm your commitment to improve your finances and stick to it!!!

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