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Use KPIs to Achieve Your New Year's Resolutions Thumbnail

Use KPIs to Achieve Your New Year's Resolutions

According to Forbes, improving fitness, finances, and mental health are the top New Year's resolutions for 2024.  

Unfortunately, Forbes also found that the odds of people achieving those goals are pretty slim. The average New Year's Resolution only lasts 4 months. Approximately 1% of all resolutions make it through an entire year, and of that 1%, only 6% manage to stick by their resolutions going forward. 

Most experts agree that the big reason people struggle with resolutions is you can't just "improve your fitness." What you can do is develop key performance indicators (KPIs) that you execute daily and track over time as you progress towards a better return on life.

So instead of making resolutions, try this three-step process to develop your own 2024 KPIs

1. Set goals that matter. 

Copying a social media trend or your best friend's resolutions is a surefire way to set yourself up for failure. The goals we follow through on tend to be goals that align with our passions, interests, and values in personal ways. Effective goals also tend to be more positive than negative. Rather than resolving to "fix" something you feel is wrong in your life, set a goal that will promote self-improvement and growth. 

For example, resolving to review your expenses may make you feel bad about how you've spent your money in the past. But if you set a goal of sticking to a new monthly cash flow target that combines responsible spending limits, you'll feel empowered to enjoy your money as you simultaneously develop better financial habits.  

2. Establish KPIs. 

In business, a KPI is a number that represents a company's performance in important areas, like sales figures or customer acquisitions. But the absolute best companies draw a distinction between KPIs that measure past performance ("lagging indicators") and KPIs that are driving future progress ("leading indicators"). 

Try to focus on KPIs that are going to lead you towards your goals. For example, if you want to eat healthier in 2024, you might start tracking your daily meals. But what you ate yesterday is in the past -- and looking back on a "cheat day" might just make you feel discouraged. Planning out your next three days of meals and checking off your shopping list is a KPI that will keep you headed in the right direction. 

Effective KPIs also tend to be small and specific steps towards a bigger goal. A company that wants to increase annual sales by 10X is going to break that big annual goal down into smaller weekly, monthly, and quarterly sales goals that it can track and manage. You can use a similar strategy to gradually build up your endurance for the half-marathon you want to run next fall. Or, on the financial side, build up a taxable investment account over the long-haul.

3. Clear your obstacles. 

When setting goals and resolutions, we can get so excited about the end we're going to achieve that we overlook all of the obstacles that could get in our way. 

So, what could interrupt your best laid plans and keep you from realizing your best intentions? How are you planning to get around those obstacles?

If rushing the kids out the door makes your mornings crazy enough already, getting up early to run might not be as realistic as exercising over lunch. 

Speaking of lunch, if you think you'll walk right past the smoothie-and-salad shop to your favorite greasy spoon diner, consider brown-bagging at least three days every week. 

As we move into tax season, please share these any new KPIs and we can monitor and help you prepare for obstacles. We want to help you live the best life possible with the money you have in 2024.