Avoid Holiday Bank Balance Burnout
Marie Claire South Africa|December 2018

Januworry isn’t just a Twitter hashtag – that post-holiday account hangover is a real issue. Zoya Pon looks at five beliefs that pave the path to Januworry and shares tips on how to save before it’s too late

Zoya Pon
1 ‘THE HOLIDAYS SHOULD BE…’

‘Many of us have a fantasy about how Christmas should be,’ says clinical psychologist Tanya van de Water, who identified specific thoughts that cause us to make bad financial decisions over the holidays. ‘We’re bombarded by the media from all sides about how the holidays “should” be, so it is very easy to buy into this,’ she says.

Avoid it: Tanya suggests asking yourself what your ideal holiday looks like, and how much you are willing to spend on it. Sam Beckbessinger, the author of Manage Your Money Like a F*cking Grownup, agrees that it is easier at this time to spend your money without giving it a second thought. ‘A good way to deal with this is to go old school: set yourself a holiday budget, and draw that money out as cash,’ she says. Why? ‘It feels much more real than swiping a card.’ Plus, you can tangibly see what you’re spending [and therefore how much you have left].

And don’t wait – start budgeting from the day you are paid. ‘Pay yourself first’, advises certified financial planner Julian Brookstone, ‘by taking half of your total income, and saving it [possibly in an emergency January savings account], or, if you have debt, by settling some of it. Start with the account that charges the highest interest rate.’ After this, Julian advises putting a number to your essential expenses and using what is left ‘for entertainment and to treat yourself as a reward for all your hard work this year’.

2 ‘WHAT WILL PEOPLE THINK?’

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