Why people put off investing (like they put off exercise) and what you can do about it

Many people say they’ll exercise or start eating healthy “tomorrow” and for far too many, tomorrow never arrives. It’s easy to procrastinate when it comes to doing the things you know you need to do, but not doing basic things such as exercising – or taking care of your finances – can really catch up with you. Here’s how to break the procrastination habit when it comes to investing.

Take one small step. Trying to get everything right is one reason most of us put off investing. Today, instead of trying to get it all right, put a few dollars in an investment account or set up an appointment with someone at your bank to talk about investing.

Find someone who will make you accountable. A professional at your bank will encourage you to invest, as will an investor who teaches a class to new investors. These can be great motivators. Develop a written plan with a deadline. Rather than thinking of investing as something you will do “someday” develop a step by step guide – how much will you invest and when? What steps do you need to take before then? Will you invest in CDs, real estate, stocks, or something else? Writing it down makes it seem more manageable and real, so you are more likely to follow through.…