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NST Join In January 2019 - In With The New

edited 29 December 2018 at 6:58PM in Debt-free wannabe challenges
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edited 29 December 2018 at 6:58PM in Debt-free wannabe challenges

:snow_laug NST Join In January Challenge

The month of January is named after the Roman God Janus, who had two faces in order that he could look at both the future and the past at the same time. Janus is the God of transitions and beginnings and he symbolises changes in life and the universe.
Many people see a New Year as a new beginning and the opportunity for a fresh start and to make changes in life. This January for me personally with be the beginning of an exciting new chapter in my life, and I am keen to learn from the mistakes I’ve made in the past in order to make the future an improvement.

We cannot stop change from happening, however we can influence it, and increasingly I am finding that small changes can make a big difference to everything. January is traditionally a ‘blue’ month in terms of finances, mood, weather etc and whilst many people start the month with grand ambitions, these can quickly be abandoned once the initial motivation wanes.
And so, I present Join in January for the Turtles – the opportunity to make some small, sustainable changes that will hopefully add up to big benefits.

Spend free days (NSD’s) – If you’re an absolute beginner aim for 10, regular player 15, expert 20. Spend free days just make us a little bit more aware of needless spending. Yellow Sticker shopping, medication, fuel purchases and milk (greent) do not scupper your nsd’s.

Make plans for the month – Nights out, treats and outings should be planned well in advance, and reduced wherever possible. No popping into coffee shops or takeaways without prior planning – and try to limit yourself to a maximum of three for the month.

Always pay your debts first – Set your budget at the beginning of the month and pay particular attention to areas where you’re likely to overspend (food for me). Make sure that you pay to your debts first.

List your frogs – Write a list of jobs that you have been putting off doing, no matter how big or small. If you’ve been meaning to make a phone call, or appointment, put some things away in a cupboard, go through a pile of post etc, then put it onto a list. Aim to cross one thing off the list each day in January and you’ll be amazed how much better you’ll feel as the month goes on.

Little savings – Even if you’re paying off a lot of debt, you should be aiming to put a little bit of something away as an emergency fund. I have decided to do the 1p savings challenge over 2019 with the theory being that on the days I can afford to add a bit more to the pot then I will, and on the days I can’t I should be able to find a penny or 5p piece lying about. I’ve printed off this chart and it’s on my fridge ready to go

Chill out – Whatever helps you to relax, make time for this – even if it’s only 15 minutes a day. Whether this is a hobby like reading, cooking, crochet or doing something for yourself like a long soak in the bath, or a mindfulness meditation. A small amount of time just for you leads to much better mental health.

Helping others – If you can, please consider donating to charity or to your local food bank. A pack of Basics sanitary towels costs 25p and would make a massive difference to a woman who needs them. If you are unable to donate money, then see if you can donate your time and/or expertise to someone who needs it. I will be asking lots for recipe ideas over the month.

Always be grateful – Take time every day to think about and write down three things in life that you are grateful for.

New to You – Before splashing out on new clothes, stuff for your house, magazines etc. consider whether or not you can get what you need by swapping with someone or going to a charity shop, using [email protected] or Fakeb00k. For example, I regularly swap books and magazines with my mam, which saves us both money. If you’re anything like me, you might have a stash of stuff somewhere that you’ve forgotten about – clothes, craft kit etc. It’s worth going through this too, and easily as much fun finding things you’ve forgotten about as it is finding something new in a shop.

Get involved – Try and check in on here every day if you can, just a quick hello can be really motivating to others, and you may pick up some helpful hints and tips from the other Turtles.

Exercise – It’s more important than ever to get outdoors when there are so few daylight hours. If you are an absolute beginner then aim for 10 minutes of walking every day (no matter the weather), if you’re a regular then aim for 1 more session each week than you would usually do.

Sort it out – Your food cupboards and stores. Someone on the Small Things thread made a ‘use it up’ box of foodstuffs, filled with items that were lurking unloved and unused. I encourage you to do the same and aim to use 1 item from the box every time you cook. If you’re not sure what to do with the item then ask on here, and I have no doubt that the Turtles will be here to help.

As always, the challenge runs from midnight on the 1st Jan 2019 to 2359 on 31st January. Whether you’re going into the New Year with a bang, or more like me and intend to be asleep for the first 8 hours of it – we should all be able to make these small changes for the month ahead.

So - who will join me in January?


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