Financial New Year’s Resolution for 2012

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It’s that time of year again, the time when so many people make so many promises to themselves.

— I’m going to lose weight, finally.
— I’m going to get organized.
— I’m going to quit smoking.
— I’m going to get out of debt or get better at handling my money.
Those are all good resolutions and all obtainable. But without a plan they are just promises. Kelly Campbell, a certified financial planner, believes every resolution or goal should be “SMAC certified.” Campbell writes in a blog for U.S. News & World Report that SMAC is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Achievable and Compatible.
So, for example, if you want to get out of debt, it’s going to take more than just writing that goal down on paper. You have to be purposeful about it. Come up with a plan for how you’ll find the money to pay off the debts. Which debt will you tackle first? (I always suggest that you start with the debt with the lowest balance. Paying that off quickly will give you an emotional burst).
“Every time you set goals, think of them with the idea of ‘SMAC certification,'” Campbell writes. “This simple idea will get you from goal setting to goal accomplishing.”
What are your financial New Year’s Resolutions for 2012? Tell me how you plan to apply the SMAC certification to your resolutions. Send your responses to this week’s Color of Money question to colorofmoney@washpost.com. Be sure to include your full name city and state. Put “Financial New Year’s Resolution for 2012” in the subject line.
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SOURCE: The Washington Post
Michelle Singletary