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Reflecting On Your New Year's Resolutions Through A Financial Lens

As the New Year approaches, the urge to set a resolution might nag you. For many, it marks a moment of introspection - a time to reflect on the triumphs and trials of the past year and chart a course for the year ahead. As financial advisers deeply immersed in the realms of numbers and strategies, a question arises: Is the practice of setting New Year’s resolutions a valuable exercise, or is it merely a customary ritual with minimal impact? In this article, we explore this longstanding tradition.

1. Review Your Past

The conclusion of the year naturally prompts a retrospective examination of achievements and missed opportunities. Accountants, with their acute understanding of the significance of reviewing financial records and performance metrics, comprehend the value of such assessments. Similarly, reflecting on personal and professional achievements aids in discerning what proved successful and what did not.


2. Is It A Goal? Or A Resolution?

Financial advisers are no strangers to goal-setting. Goals often revolve around numerical targets such as meeting financial objectives, enhancing efficiency, or elevating client satisfaction. However, the nature of New Year’s resolutions may differ, as they tend to focus more on behavior, habits, and personal growth.


3. Why You Should Set Resolutions

  • Personal Development: Resolutions centered on personal growth can complement professional achievements. Whether it involves committing to learning new software, refining communication skills, or maintaining a healthier work-life balance, these resolutions can positively impact both personal and professional spheres

  • Rejuvenated Focus: The act of setting resolutions directs attention to areas that may have been overlooked during the year, reigniting motivation and instilling a renewed sense of purpose

  • Manifest Positive Habits: Resolutions often entail forming new habits. Whether it's adopting a more effective organizational system or dedicating specific time for professional development, these habits can lead to long-term improvements


4. Why Setting A Resolution Might Not Be The Best Idea

  • Expectations May Have To Change: The inflexibility of New Year’s resolutions may foster unrealistic expectations, potentially resulting in disappointment if goals are not met within a predefined time frame

  • One-time Focus vs. Ongoing Adaptation: Short-sighted concentration on New Year’s resolutions might hinder the ability to adapt to evolving circumstances throughout the year which is a vital skill in the dynamic field of finance

  • Taking A Different Approach: Rather than viewing resolutions as stringent mandates for the year, accountants can adopt a more fluid approach. Setting intentions or themes for the year (such as 'continuous improvement' or 'adapting to change') allows for ongoing growth without the pressure of rigid resolutions


To Conclude

For accountants, the practice of setting New Year’s resolutions can indeed yield benefits in terms of personal development and renewed focus. However, a balanced perspective is crucial. Instead of concrete resolutions, perhaps setting intentions aligned with professional goals could offer a more adaptable and sustainable approach. Ultimately, whether to embrace New Year’s resolutions or not is a personal choice. The decision should harmonise with individual styles and aspirations.


The article outlines just some tips regarding your financial approach to New Year's resolutions. It does not represent financial advice. If you would like personalised financial advice, please contact a financial adviser.

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