Warning: Late repayment can cause you serious money problems. For help, go to moneyadviceservice.org.uk
Are you one of the millions of people who make New Year’s Resolutions every year? Setting yourself goals and targets can be great, but too often we can find ourselves losing interest come February 1st and making the same New Year’s resolutions next year.
With that in mind, here are some common new year’s resolutions and our tips for how to keep on track.
Easily one of the most common New Year’s Resolutions – after overindulging throughout the festive period everyone is ready to shed a few pounds come the New Year.
Here’s our biggest tip – don’t try and run before you can walk. If you go from eating chocolate and cheese all day, to celery, carrot sticks and kale – there’s a good chance you might get fed up and give up. Instead, look at simple, small switches you can make to your diet. Can you move from full fat to semi skimmed milk or swap the sandwich at lunch for a wrap or salad?
If you’re really serious about losing weight, you could join a group or look for a friend to do it with you – when you’re accountable to someone other than just yourself you’ll generally find that you stay on track.
Finally, calorie tracking apps like My Fitness Pal can be a great help – when you record what you’re eating each day it not only helps you to stick to your calorie limit but lets you see the calories and nutrition in the things you’re eating, leading to better eating habits overall.
If getting fit is one of your new year’s resolutions it can be tempting to just join a gym and think that you’ve nailed it. And you might have – some people love working out in a gym – but it’s not for everyone, and if you don’t really LOVE the treadmill and the exercise bike then you might lose momentum.
Instead, why not think about joining a local sports team or running group – whatever your sporting preference it’s likely there’s bound to be a group in your area, and as well as getting you fit, you might meet some new people. And don’t think you have to stick to run of the mill exercise either; there are all sort of different activities that keep you fit without even realising.
Tech and apps are a great way to keep you motivated too. You can pick up fitness trackers for a reasonable price now (you are almost guaranteed to become addicted to looking at it) and there are plenty of free apps, podcasts and YouTube videos to get you moving too. Having a program to follow so you can see your progress is a great idea to begin with, try the couch to 5k program which is not only a good starting point – it’s free!
The age old promise of every person, every year.
If your plan in 2019 is to be better with your money then there are lots of ways to take a crack at this.
Firstly if you went into debt for Christmas (hopefully not, but it happens) make sure you’re out from under this– you won’t be able to save if you’re paying this off, so be realistic about how long this will take.
Take a look at the options your bank offers – is there a mobile app? Download it, you’d be amazed how much difference being able to check your balance or transfer money on the go is. Do they offer text or email alerts with your balance, or for when you go under a certain amount? If they do it’s a good idea to make use of these as they help you to keep a firm grip on how much you actually have to spend – and receiving notifications from your bank (even ones you’ve signed up for) are likely to make you think before you spend.
You can also get great budgeting apps now that can help get a grip on your money and where you’re spending it, to spot any areas where you can make savings.
What are your new year’s resolutions, and how will you stick to them?