In January we are all filled with good intentions…..we are going to lose weight, go to gym, stop smoking and any number of other resolutions. These often don’t last past the first week before we fall right back into our old habits.

The same can be said about our money. Traditionally January is a long month with many of us getting paid earlier than usual in December. January also has many extra expenses, like new uniforms, stationery and school fees to name just a few. This, coupled with the fact that our money has to last an extra two weeks longer than usual, can spell disaster if we haven’t planned wisely and can lead to us going back to our old habits and dipping into the credit card we paid off so diligently or taking out personal loans.

 

 

This year let us decide to make changes and stick to the decision. It is easier than you may think. At the beginning of every year you are a time millionaire. Yes, you are, just think about it. Every day has 24 hours of 60 minutes, each with 60 seconds so each day you have 86 400 seconds in your “bank account”. “Time is free, but it’s priceless. You can’t own it, but you can use it. You can’t keep it, but you can spend it. Once you’ve lost it you can never get it back”. Every year you start with 31 536 000 seconds to use. You get to decide how you “spend” your “millions”. Do you waste them on negativity or do you use them wisely to plan ahead? Planning is vital to financial health along with spending time daily managing your finances. We encourage you daily to spend 10 minutes of your time thinking about, planning and managing your finances. Instead of buying lunch at work consider bringing your own lunch or review your bank charges. Use this saving in order to fast-track your debt starting with the smallest account first, and then use that installment to fast-track your bigger debts. Pay off high interest loans and credit cards as quickly as you can, and make sure that you close them as soon as they are paid off. This prevents us from being tempted to use them again “in an emergency”. Once all the debts are paid off save the amount you were paying towards debt and create your “ICE” fund. Ideally this fund should have 3-6 months living expenses in a liquid accessible fund so that you can survive for at least 3 months should you need to.

Remember to check your insurance policies, and to depreciate the value of your car so that you are not paying unnecessarily high premiums on last year’s value.

This year you can turn Janu-Worry into January by simply sticking to the resolutions you made to make this New Year a New Start, and spend less of your “millions” worrying about debt.