We all know, nothing scares Nigerians more than the first month of the new year. It is the month that is believed to have 39 days and it is the month of January, the month that comes to hunt you for all the “we outside” and “detty december” that you did in the previous year.
Here are some financial hacks to deploy during this period and you can always use this hack when you find yourself in a similar spot at any time of the new year.
– Get Real With Yourself
Yes, get real with yourself and step out of the hangover of the festive season. Face the reality that you are in the new year and you are in JANUARY!!. This would help you get through with the rest of the hacks that would be mentioned. Get real with yourself and look at how much you have left from all the spending in the festive season, how that little money will support you through the rest of the month.
Be determined to stick with whatever method you would deploy. Being real with yourself also means being patient with yourself and not blaming yourself for the excess spending during the festive season.
– Cut Back on Excesses
December came with excesses and January came with shortages, yes, shortages. There is something about this time of year where regardless of your good intentions, somehow you still end up having little to no money left before payday or your next invoice gets paid. They are not doing you… It is just that time of the month so cut back on any unnecessary excess. Tell yourself, there’s nothing I can do about the lack of funds but I certainly can do a bit of damage control and one of them is cutting off those places and those responsibilities you incurred when there was still funds. No need for odogwu this period.
– Learn to budget
If you are a budgeting guru already then congratulations, but you can still learn a thing or two. However, if you typically overspend in the wrong areas, January is the perfect month to start being more organised with your money. Budgeting doesn’t mean you are stingy or having a budget doesn’t make you broke, instead it helps you to spend wisely and save you a lot of money.
Work out exactly how much you would need for the month of January and what bills you need to take care of immediately. If you still have some bills to come out towards the end of January, you can plan that with next month’s budget.
Learning how to budget in tight periods like this, will reveal areas that are eating too much into your monthly income. After budgeting what is necessary for the month of January, you can then work out how much would be needed for the month of January and can give insight into what you need for other months in the year.
– Ask for Help
Another way you can be real with yourself is asking for help when necessary. If you need to join a friend in his/her car while going to work, you should. January is not the time to show levels at work, that little conversation you have with your neighbor or co-worker can save you a lot of money in this period.
Yes, entering public transport might not be convenient but Uber is not cheap either so find that friend that lives close to your nearest bus stop and ask for help.
– Socialise at home
Yes, there are places you have planned to visit in the year and they may be opening a new spot in town that you want to hit with your gang but odogwu!! chairman!! this is January, you can stay at home. Now is the perfect time to finish reading that book, writing those plans and doing all the hard stuff that you won’t do because you are hanging out with friends.
You could find fun things to do with your friends at home, you could even rotate it amongst yourselves and have fun and if you need to take it outside, there are fun places that are free to hang out with friends and loved ones.
Here is an extra tip for you on the side, now is the perfect time to show your special skills and make money off that side hustle. Dust those old skills that you learnt but you never got started on because of time. Now is the time to make money from it and who knows you might finally hit it off and start something huge.