Surviving January - How to Spend Less and Save More

Purse and Loose Change

These first few months of the year can be tricky, most of us have overspent over the festive period on Christmas gifts and nights out and now we have to struggle to make it to payday. One of my goals for this year is to increase my savings and if I want to get off to a good start then I need to find a way to cut back and spend more carefully. This is a post to share my tips and tricks on cutting back on spending, allowing you to save more money and survive January.

Plan Your Meals -  Sit down every week/month before you go shopping and decide on what meals you plan to have and create a shopping list. It's so easy to get carried away when food shopping and pick up extra items you don't need that's why I always like to have a list and know exactly what meals I plan to cook. Planning your meals also allows you to choose cost-effective options meals that can be cooked in batches and frozen for the next week. If you want to take things a step further you can go online first and shop around for the best deals from your local stores (this would only be worthwhile if you make a significant saving as you will also need to factor in additional travel costs etc.) another option would be to check the weekly deals from your chosen supermarket and create meals that use ingredients on offer.

Avoid Doing Things That Encourage You To Spend Money - I know if go out to do a bit of window shopping I'll definitely buy something, even if it's something small or maybe just something to eat I will inevitably end up spending some what's the solution? Don't put myself in that position. I'm not saying stay at home and do nothing but give more thought to what causes you to spend money if you're bored and want to get out of the house for a bit avoid going to the places that encourage you to spend money and find ways to treat yourself that don't cost money. You could spend the day pampering yourself, stay in and play board games or have a movie marathon.

Be Careful Of January Sales - If you decide to hop online and check out the sales, be careful! Seeing something with money off often makes you feel like you like you need to get it....I mean the deal is too good to miss......right? Well, this only really applies if it's something you actually need, my suggestion would be if you decide to check out the sales write a list of anything you need and don't but anything extra that catches your eye.  

Notebook and Laptop

Start Spending Intentionally - If you want to change the way you spend money then you need to start thinking about every purchase and spend intentionally. Before each purchase take a few minutes to consider can I afford this? Do I need this? Do I have something similar? Can I find it cheaper elsewhere? This is a good habit to create to limit how often you buy things that only give you short-term happiness, keep your money for your long-term goals and things that are genuinely valuable to you.

Can You Pay For It In Full - If you don't have the money to pay for something outright then do you really need to buy it? I'm not saying you should never take anything out on credit but if you find yourself putting things on your credit card a little too often or you rely on it after Christmas then, quite simply it's time to stop! If you don't have the money to buy something then there's a good chance you don't need it.

Don't Buy Immediately  - If you find something you really want to buy, write it down, take a picture, note it on your phone then do nothing. After a week/month go back over the items you wanted to buy and see if you still want them. It's easy to get caught up in the marketing in products, everything is designed to draw you in and make you feel like it's an essential but often when you take a step back and wait a while you realise it's not as important as you once thought. Another idea is to list all the items that you want to but and at the end of the month pick the one item you want most.

Use Cash -  I have a terrible habit of using my bank card without regularly checking my bank account and the next thing I know I've overspent when you use a bank/credit card it doesn't feel like you are really spending money because you aren't physically handing over the cash and that can quickly add up and be costly. I suggest, if you also have this problem, taking the amount of money you want to spend during the week from the bank and keeping it in your purse. Every time you make a purchase you will have to hand over real money and be able to see what you are spending and how much cash it's leaving you with. 

No Spend Days - My final tip is to challenge yourself to have no spend days, it's exactly as it sounds you try not to spend any money for a day then see how many times you can do this in a month. I speak about this in another post on how to save money on a budget which I will link here.

My additional tip is to get yourself a budget planner to help you organise/keep track of your finances, I have my own that's available to purchase from my Etsy shop, I'd love it if you checked it out!

Jar Filled With Loose Change

I hope you enjoyed this post and found my ideas helpful if you have any ideas/posts of your own let me know. 


  1. Great advice!! I'm really trying to cut back on my spending this year. It's hard when you're a Starbucks and shopping addict lol

    1. Thank you! Yeah it's so difficult I constantly want to buy new beauty products but need to restrain myself!

  2. I am so crap with money, I have constant ‘treat yo self’ mentality! One of my New Years resolutions is to be more careful with money and I’m loving the idea of no spend days, that’s something I’m definitely going to try out.

    Jay x

    1. Yeah no spend days are good because you feel like you've achieved something at the end of the day and then you can see how many days you can go in a row!

  3. Great advice. I always carry cash for the same reason. If I have my card I just forget about how much I’m spending