Stop taking advice about your future from people who are in the same position as you.  Instead, take advice from people in the position you hope to be.

It is better to build your own home and invite someone in for shelter than to hand them the bricks you’re using to build your own. Sometimes without realizing it our kindness becomes our weakness. Giving is important and a key potentiator of good karma but it is never in one’s best interest to give from what you truly don’t have or give in a way that delays your own progress.

Get rid of your cable. Chances are that with your internet and monthly cable bundles you’re probably paying on average upwards of $150 a month. Shop around for good cable internet (6-25Mbps should just about do it) and look into streaming. I currently discontinued my cable service ($189) got a faster internet connection (44.99) and got a Hulu account (7.99). That along with my Netflix (7.99-8.99) and HBO Go is saving me a whopping $120. For even more savings streaming providers allow you to stream on several devices so pair up with a friend. You can share your HBO Go account with them and they can share their Sho Go.

Shop from your closet. This is particularly for the shopaholics. If you took the time to tally how much you spend a year on clothes, I promise you’d be unpleasantly surprised .You know you have clothes in your closet that still have tags on em, or items that are too small that you promised you’d fit into. Last November, after being loaded with tons of miscellaneous bills, I decided I would cut out shopping until I recovered. Two months later, not only am I saving money, it’s become quite fun to test my creativity, mix and match outfits and putting use to pieces I haven’t worn.

Don’t make backward resolutions. Work on your palate.  If you want your make-up to be beyond beat you have to work on the canvas you’re placing it on first. Make up looks its best on beautiful skin, so before you resolve to up your contour game, first resolve to have beautiful skin. The same goes for style. If you want to improve your style, you must first improve your vessel. That doesn’t necessarily mean dropping pounds or lifting weights. We all have a style muse. If crop tops and tight jeans are your thing, then chances are this year is the year to trim down on that gut that’s been putting a wrench in your style goals.

Fact: Motivation doesn’t last, that’s why it’s recommended DAILY. Don’t just put your goals for the year out there, making an inevitably doomed promise to yourself. Develop a vision board. Google images mirroring what you hope to achieve this year and make a collage. Look at it every single day, twice a day if you can. This will keep your goals at the forefront of your mind and constantly motivated.

Trim the fat! Make a true concerted effort to experience life. We all have different means and stressors but we are all capable of finding and doing things that bring us substantial joy. Trim the financial fat in your life.  Small changes such as, lowering your phone’s data plan, getting rid of some of your cable channels, eating out less, carpooling, looking into employee discounts, couponing, or even buying less scratch-offs, can render quite a bit of savings.  $15 here and there can quickly add up to a few hundred dollars.