2022 financial detox: Monetising dry January.

We’re all familiar with the mantra healthy body, healthy mind, but how about healthier body, healthier bank account?

I try to recalibrate my relationship with alcohol most Januarys. I don’t eliminate it but I cut back. Whether you drink at home or go out, alcohol is expensive unless you go for the real gut rot and that’s costly in other ways. The government raises billions every year taxing the stuff which is both useful for it and also in theory acts as a bit of a deterrent although I’m not convinced. But if we do cut back, we do a reverse double whammy of Christmas and New Year – we might lose a few physical pounds and add a few more to our bank account. If we can dilute what is for many of us the pain of foregoing a glass of wine with the pleasure of some extra pounds in our bank accounts then that is a good offset and might just help incentivise us.

For some the issue isn’t dry January. It might be an JustEat or Deliveroo-free January. I never use those in the country because they don’t exist where I live, but if I stay in London, thanks to one of my sons, I have discovered JustEat and Deliveroo and they are angels and demons all in one. I wrote about temptation in my post yesterday when it comes to online offerings of clothes, shoes, and stuff that we really don’t need. I would add delivered meals to this same category. If we can do without them again we’re likely to benefit by saving money and also probably not eating as much. If we prepare and cook food ourselves, we’re much less likely to over-provision.

Another thing I’m trying this January is to eat more vegetarian food. It’s lighter on the stomach and on the wallet. Lentils anyone? I promise all the sceptics out there, my husband included, imaginatively-cooked lentils can be delicious.

Again I’ll be interested to have a look at my bank account at the end of the month and see how much of a difference cutting back on alcohol, flexitarianism and home cooking make.

Tomorrow I’ll share ideas on what to do with the money we save. Let me know if there’s anything you might be planning to give up for January or cut back on and how much that might save you.

If you’re interested in reading more about how we can master money so that it does not master us then check out my book, 10 Things Everyone Needs to Know About Money, available here.

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