“Shark Tank” television personality Kevin O’Leary says the number one New Year’s resolution should be to pay down your debt.

“That is the most important thing you can do for your future,” O’Leary said on CNBC’s Make It.

According to the latest statistics from ValuePenguin, the average American household has $5,700 in debt, including $9,333 for balance-carrying households. Unfortunately, that average has been climbing since 2013.Kevin O'Leary - Make This Your Number 1 New Year's Resolution 1

“Of course you want health and happiness, and everybody wants everybody to have that,” O’Leary added. “But in terms of taking care of your family and you, paying down your debt is No. 1.”
“New Year’s Eve, you look at your credit card and you say to it, ‘I’m paying off your balance buddy, and I’m going to do that before July,'” said O’Leary. “Make that a New Year’s resolution.”

O’Leary: Stay Invested No Matter What

When the markets are giving investors a ride on the roller coaster of volatility, O’Leary recommends staying invested regardless of what the prices are doing. As opposed to simply staying on the sidelines in cash to wait for the most opportune time to purchase, it’s best to utilize dollar cost averaging–an investment strategy that involves purchasing an investment on a regular basis, irrespective of the fluctuations in price–particularly when prices are low–resulting in an accumulation of the asset over a period of time.

Related: Kevin O’Leary Reveals His Biggest Money Mistake

“Don’t try and time the market,” said O’Leary. “When the market soars, it’s not necessarily time to sell. When the market collapses, it’s not always time to buy.”

“The key to it is invest over time,” added O’Leary. “Sometimes you’ll buy stocks when they’re very cheap, sometimes you’ll pay more for them. But if you average in over time, that’s a very good long-term strategy.”

When the market oscillates the way it has been lately, it can be easy to get caught up in the heightened frenzy of selling. O’Leary suggests compartmentalizing emotions and preventing them from clouding market decisions.

“When it comes to volatility, don’t let it affect you,” O’Leary assured. “Don’t get emotional about stocks. They never cry for you so you shouldn’t cry for them.”

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