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When January’s Bills Come Due

Don’t panic about January’s payment-due notices from your holiday spending. Instead, get deliberate and determined about knocking them off fast. Here’s an idea many money gurus recommend: For now, remove the plastic from your wallet and pay cash. You will be forced to conserve what you have available each day, and you will spend less than you typically do. Next, visit your online bank checking account register. (Most of us have one these days.) Log in and go to the withdrawal/debit column. Sort it by amount paid with the lowest amount at the top. You will notice dozens—possibly hundreds—of expenses under, say, $25; coffees out, luxury foods, lunches, gifts, nice-to-have purchases, movie rentals, and more. At least 60 to 90 days of these expenses should be visible. Identify purchases you did not really need. Eliminate similar expenses in the near future. Use the additional money you are now saving to attack your holiday splurge.

For more tips on financial wellbeing, including planning for retirement, tuition benefits, upcoming seminars, and employee discounts, visit the Benefits Office website.


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