It’s almost that time of year again. And by that, we mean, well, then end of the year. Thankfully, this ending is more of a transition into a new beginning. This mile-marker is the perfect time to tie up loose ends and get ready for a new year. So break out your favorite pen and notepad and add these five things to your to-do list before the year is over.
1. Check Your Finances
Yes, you may want to check your bank account after all that holiday shopping, but there’s a larger meaning here when we say to “check your finances.” Below is a financial checklist you may want to consider before the new year comes.
- Create financial goals and a new budget: If you’re looking for ways to keep an eye on your budget, there are some great trusted apps out there such as Mint and PocketGuard to keep you in line and aware of your spending habits.
- Check your tax withholding: If you are receiving more or fewer tax returns than you’d like each year, then now is a good time to review the withholdings on your income and make any adjustments if necessary.
- Review insurance coverage: Take a look at your current insurance policies, and make sure you are receiving the coverage you need.
- Create a will: If you haven’t already created a will for yourself, then now is the time to get it done. Schedule an appointment with an attorney to find out what to do.
- Evaluate your retirement savings: While you’re at it with the will, review your retirement savings plan. If you haven’t started one, then start looking into different financial advisors to help you get started.
2. Make Appointments/Reservations
If you have any leftover money on an insurance plan such as dental care, then be sure to schedule any needed appointments before the new year. For example, if you’re coming close to your six-month dental checkup and still have money on your insurance plan, then it’s smart to schedule that appointment before the year ends to make the most of your plan.
Longing for warmer days and dreaming of next summer vacation? Now is the perfect time to bundle up by the fire and search for new destinations. Places like Teton Valley Realty offer incredible summer amenities and club memberships. Get ahead of the game and make your summer plans and reservations now before it’s too late.
3. Clean out Folders and Files
If you happen to be an email or photo hoarder, then enough is enough. Start the year fresh with zero unread messages and extra space on your phone or laptop. Delete old emails, mark unnecessary and unopened ones as “read,” and unsubscribe to any email lists you may not want to be a part of anymore. Then, delete any old photos or duplicates that are taking up precious space on your devices. It’s almost like spring cleaning! Except that it’s virtual… and in the winter.
4. Clean out Your Wardrobe
Along with winter comes a number of different clothing and shoe drives to send to the homeless, refugees, or third-world countries. This is a great time for you to go through your closet and purge any clothing items you may not wear or need anymore. If you don’t know of any local clothing drives, then take your items to the nearest Goodwill, the Salvation Army, or a religious institution.
5. Evaluate Your Accomplishments
No, there is not an item to “make new year’s resolutions” on this checklist. Shocker, right? While goal-setting is an important thing to do and follow-through with, it’s just as important to recognize the achievements you have made this past year. Rather than focusing on what you could’ve done better, end the year on a good note by praising yourself for the things you did right. Nobody is perfect, and if you focus all your energy on your faults, then you won’t allow yourself to be in the right mindset for accomplishing future goals.
In the hustle and bustle of the busy holidays this winter, make sure to set aside some time to prepare for the new year. Make a checklist of all the items necessary to complete before January 1, and start the new year off with a clear and eased conscience.