A New Year, a New Money Challenge?

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Somehow we find ourselves in a new year. I have never had a year go as fast as 2016 did. Part of it was likely due to the fact that I spent nine of the 12 months pregnant! I’m excited to see what 2017 is going to bring my new family of four that’s for sure.

Though there’s nothing stopping someone from doing a challenge any time of the year, there’s something refreshing and, in a way, easier, with doing them with the start of a new year. Come January 1st there is no shortage of diet challenges, fitness challenges or a money challenge.

For me, I won’t be setting many financial goals this year. I’m on a reduced maternity income so my only real goal for 2017 is to maintain our current budget and prepare for 2018 when I’ll be back to work full-time and preparing our house for sale. That doesn’t mean I don’t think partaking in a money challenge of sorts would be a good idea though.

I tend to do well under pressure. Pressure that I put on myself that is. If I give myself a (realistic) goal I tend to do well with my attempts at reaching it. This has worked well academically and professionally for me. If you’re this type of person, doing something like a money challenge may be exactly what you need to reach your 2017 financial goals.

Figure Out What You’re Challenging

Before you can start any sort of challenge you need to figure out what your goal is and it has to be realistic. If you decide you want to start saving for a house downpayment and set your savings goal at something like $30,000 for the year but only earn $40,000 per year, it may be a difficult goal to meet. You need to have a decent grasp of your financial situation before you can start or accept any sort of money challenge.

Types of Money Challenge

There is no shortage of ideas in terms of what kind of money challenge you can do. It could be simply to start a budget, to reach a savings goal which could be for something small or something very large, to earn more income or even to set up life insurance. Figure out what’s important for you and create or find a money challenge that works for you. There are many pre-made money challenges out there to follow but there’s nothing stopping you from creating your own.

Though 2017 will very much be a year of growth for my family in some ways, with my fixed income and managing my new family budget for four, I’m ok for the first time with not partaking in a money challenge this year (for the record, my favorite ones are income boosting challenges). I do think partaking in a money challenge is a great way to regain focus and see what you’re really capable of. I certainly never thought it would be possible for us to put over $2,000/month towards debt when I set a personal money challenge goal but we did and I encourage everyone to try a set a money challenge goal and crush it!

Do you partake in any annual money challenge?

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  1. We have a personal financial goal of generating $2,000/month in income from our blog for 2017. Basically starting at $0, so it feels a bit intimidating but I know it is possible! We’ll rock that goal! 🙂

  2. I have made smart goals this year and I hope they get completed. I’m taking baby steps towards financial priorities and have sorted them according to their importance. Tracking your expenses thoroughly gives you a clear idea for unnecessary leaks.

  3. I’m putting myself through a spending ban (Cait Flanders has made the idea popular.) I’ve given myself the right to spend money on a few things that I already know are coming up (dress for my brother’s wedding, although I’m going to do it as a bargain somehow). So far, I think it’s helping.

    I know some people do no-spending challenges for a month at a time. i might try it for February (I know, it’s the shortest month but maybe that’s what I need to get started.)

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