The 5 Dumbest New Year’s Resolutions of All Time

New Years.

A time of overeating, watching football or old movies, and resolving to do better, maybe a week or two in the future…..

Are we at that point yet? Is anyone “doing better” yet?

Resolving and actually “doing” better are two totally different things, aren’t they? New Year’s resolutions are usually bound to fail….especially if you try any of these silly tactics:

5 Dumbest New Year’s Resolutions Phrases

1)   Losing weight “on your own”: Yeah, I know. You’re going to lose weight or build savings without any help from your friends. This resolution is like putting a bunch of French fries in front of you and saying you won’t eat them. Of course you’ll eat them….willpower is baloney. Don’t count on any goal that you’ll do “without help.”

Who needs to reinvent the wheel?

 

Better solution: find someone who’s done it before and ask them for help.

 

2)   Joining a gym so you’ll work out. Back when I belonged to a gym (before I began working out with friends), my least favorite time of year was the first two weeks of January. The gym was packed with people I’d never seen before….and wouldn’t see again the rest of the year.

Don’t convince yourself that by joining ANYTHING you’ll actually make the commitment to change. Instead, build systems to change. For workouts, force yourself out of bed at a certain time. Join chat groups on working out.  Read magazines. Track your progress.

Create goals that begin with “How can I learn about this now and then spend money when I prove I’ll stick with it?…..”

 

Better solution: create surround sound environment so you succeed in your goals….and spend money later, once you know you’re serious.

 

5 dumbest resolutions ever_FFA

3)   Deciding to save more every month by “writing a check.” Nobody….and I mean nobody…..writes a check toward their goals. If we want to get all 2010 about it, nobody even presses buttons to transfer money from one account to another. Do you know how the ballers do it? They save automatically. If you have to think for only a minute about your goals, you’re toast.

 

Better solution: Set up a system of saving that doesn’t require you to think.

 

4)   “I’ll try and…..” 

Best. Solution. Ever.: Repeat after Yoda. There is no try. Only do.

5)   I’ll cut back on smoking. Making a change halfway is a sign that you really aren’t commited to the goal. Want to achieve something? You can’t be half pregnant. Go for it. Don’t cut back on smoking: stop completely. Don’t save “a little more” toward your goals: find out what they cost and create a plan. Don’t try and budget this year: set up an account at Mint or Yodlee and track every penny automatically.

 

Better solution: Create automatic systems that will change your behavior completely.

Photo: Jeff_Golden

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Author: Average Joe

A 16 year veteran of the financial planning and financial media circus. Lover of hamburgers and ice cream.

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2 Comments

  1. LOL. You can’t be half pregnant.

    I totally agree with: “How can I learn about this now and then spend money when I prove I’ll stick with it?…..” I mean, to backpedal entirely there, I did join a gym a few years ago when I decided I wanted to start swimming again (the bath tub just wasn’t big enough), but I wore a super jenky, old bathing suit and goggles I’d unearthed in the attic from my high school swim team years for months. Literally until the goggles snapped off my head in the pool one day 9 months later and I thought – I guess a $20 investment in this ok now.

    I like to try to set goals when I have a new hobby or something with the starting price being the lowest I can get it and if I’m still doing it in like 6 months, I can upgrade something small and at 1 year I can get something a little bigger (like a proper bathing suit that wasn’t so worn it was nearly see through). I’ve found that to work well and be a nice bit of motivation to keep going.
    Mel @ brokeGIRLrich recently posted..Why You Should Have a Favorite Amendment & Other Scholarship TipsMy Profile

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    • That’s hilarious, Mel! I think you’re right on: the $20 investment was probably well worth it by then.

      I swam in high school for one year. I think my nickname was The Human Brick.

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