New Year, New Habits
This new year let’s inculcate new habits. Taking big steps can seem very difficult but changing small habits which we usually neglect can help one make major lifestyle changes.
Master health check up
Undergoing a master health checkup once in 6 months can help us keep a tab on our health. They say prevention is better than cure. By undergoing regular check-ups can help reduce health problems and this ultimately can help reduce major health expenses
No spending days
Commit yourself to no spending days. Pick a day of the week and make sure you spend nothing on that day. This practice can slowly be increased from one day a week to one week a month. This will help you to control your spending habits.
Cut down on impulsive shopping
Cut down on impulsive shopping. Make a shopping list before you go shopping. Stick to the list and buy only what’s necessary. This will automatically help you reduce your spending.
Become healthy without going to a gym
Every year one pays for a gym membership but after a month they don’t continue it. The zeal to go to the gym reduces. Ultimately your gym membership goes to waste. Instead look for options to get healthy without going to the gym. Go out for a run or walk. Subscribe to the YouTube channels who suggest exercise to be done at home. You are getting healthy and also saving on the gym membership money.
Automate good habits
Start investing for your retirement if you haven’t already. Invest in mutual funds, retirements plans etc. by way of SIP where the monthly payments are automated.
Identify new financial goals, re-work on existing ones
As you grow in age the financial commitments and priorities keep changing and new responsibilities will be added. Identify the new ones, start working towards them. Also, work on the existing ones and see how far you are from reaching your goal and how are the investments doings. If they are underperforming then revise your investment strategy.
Analyze your bills from last year
Analyze your bills from last year. See where you are spending more money and where you can cut down on unnecessary expenses. Try reducing your basic expenses like electricity and water bills by using them optimally. Spend quality time with family by cooking with them instead of eating out a lot.
Add an extra month to the emergency fund
Build an emergency fund if you haven’t already. Add an extra month’s expenses to the emergency fund account. Review your emergency fund money as expenses increase every year either due to inflation or due to the family circumstances. Having an emergency fund is as basic as having water and electricity. If you do not have an emergency fund create one.
Pay an extra EMI
Pay an extra EMI this year, also known as advance EMI. This will help you become debt free faster than you thought.
Cut down on credit card usage
Paying through credit card feels easy but the problem starts when you forget to pay the credit card bills and interest burden increases. Credit cards are one reason for impulsive shopping. Try cutting down the usage of credit cards. Know when to use credit cards. Use only when there are offers available. Once used, pay the bills immediately. This will help you cut down on expenses and you won’t be burdened with interest charges.
Donate or fund a person’s health or education. If you have less amount then collect a little every month and donate it at the end of the year to someone. If you have a tight budget then donate your clothes and even your time to others. Spend some time at the orphanages or old age homes. End of the day you are making someone happy. It doesn’t matter if you are spending money or not, the only thing that matters is are the others happy.
Have a savings account for health
Have a savings account for you and your family’s health. You never know when an emergency can come up. Keep saving every month in the account. If you have a health emergency you can use it instead of taking loans. If you aren’t using it till retirement then you can use this fund then. Also, take health insurance with all the critical illness riders. This will assist you on health expenses.
Cut down on your screen time
Cut down on the use of phones, iPad or laptop beside work. Read a book or have me time for yourself instead.
Spend more time with family and friends
Spending more time with family or friends physically than virtually is more important. Sit and play games or watch a movie together. Have quality time with them. Giving someone your time is more important than just tending to their financial needs. So spend more time with family.
This year inculcate these small habits to make major life changes. Welcome the new year with new habits. Happy New Year!