The New Year is traditionally a time to reflect and evaluate the previous year, where you currently stand, and identify what you would like to accomplish in the year ahead. The practice has been around for thousands of years, the origin of which is credited to the ancient Babylonians, who rang in the new year with an 11-day festival that included making promises to the gods in hopes they’d earn good favor in the coming year. Psychological research suggests there is something emotionally resonant about observing significant dates, known as the fresh-start effect, which helps explain why people are more motivated to set and take action toward a new goal.
So, go ahead and make those New Year’s resolutions! Here is one tip for sticking with them past the first few weeks of the year from psychologist Ayelet Fishbach, one of the world’s foremost researchers on the science of motivation:
“Give advice to someone who is struggling with a similar issue. You might hesitate to give advice about something you haven’t yet mastered …when you give advice, you recall your past successful behaviors and form specific plans of action for the future. As a result, you become more confident and committed to your success.” 
After a mostly disappointing year in global markets, investors are undoubtedly ready for a fresh start.
Despite signs of cooling consumer price growth, economic data continued to point to a strong labor market and a robust economy, fueling concerns about the Fed maintaining heightened levels of interest rates further into the future than most market participants had anticipated. As a result, the S&P 500 closed down -5.76% for the month and finished down -18.11% for the year.
A down year for markets can cause anxiety, but they happen more commonly than most investors realize. In fact, since 1928, the S&P 500 has finished the year with negative results 26 times, or roughly once every four years.  They are an essential aspect of investing that investors should prepare themselves to endure, for it is the “down” markets that set the stage for the “up” markets. No one can tell you either the depth or duration of the “down” market, but they eventually end, and history has shown that investors are rewarded for their patience and resilience when they do.
Wishing you the best of success in the new year!
Articles of Interest
Three Crucial Lessons for Weathering the Stock Market’s Storm
Investors can always expect uncertainty. While volatile periods can be intense, investors who learn to embrace uncertainty may often triumph in the long run. Reacting to down markets can derail the progress made toward reaching your financial goals. Here are three lessons to keep in mind during periods of volatility that can help you stick to your plan.
When It Comes to Risk, It’s Dangerous to Trust Your Instincts
In times like this, it’s easy to question one’s long-term investment strategy. Hindsight bias would make us believe that we saw this coming and should trust our gut about what comes next. Looking forward from this new vantage point, the future may look riskier than it did when initially setting an investment course, and a change may seem prudent. Here is why it’s dangerous to trust our instincts when it comes to risk and what we can do instead.
The 10 Most Important Things Secure 2.0 Will Do for Your Retirement, in Plain English
The Secure Act 2.0 of 2022 (“Secure 2.0”) was just signed into law. In many ways, Secure 2.0 was the gift all Americans needed, and we couldn’t be happier about the provisions that have made it easier to save and plan for a successful retirement. Here’s a rundown on the 10 most important things included in the $1.7 trillion bill that may positively impact your financial future.
15 Best Festivals in the U.S. to Add to Your Bucket List
Festivals are a fantastic way to experience something special among thousands of people yet still have personal memories to take away. You’ll want to add these best festivals in the US to your bucket list. To make it easier to plan your year, we put them in the order of when they happen.
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S&P 500 Index represents the 500 leading U.S. companies, approximately 80% of the total U.S. market capitalization.
 Milkman, K. (2022, January 11). New Year’s Resolutions Are Notoriously Slippery, but Science Can Help You Keep Them. Scientific American. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/new-years-resolutions-are-notoriously-slippery-but-science-can-help-you-keep-them/
 Damodaran, A. (n.d.). Historical Returns on Stocks, Bonds and Bills: 1928-2021. Current Data. https://pages.stern.nyu.edu/~adamodar/New_Home_Page/datafile/histretSP.html