A couple of days ago, I was sitting down with my friend Rosa enjoying a glass of mocha. Rosa playfully remarked that the reason why December comes before January is because pride comes before a fall. I could not help the laughter that poured out of me. However, her statement got me thinking about Njaanuary and its 180 days. *Sigh*
I used to hear people around me saying that January is a long and tough month but I always thought they were exaggerating. Well, I admit that this is a tough month for many but surprisingly enough, not everyone is broke and complaining. Let’s dig deeper and see why it is tough for many.
Broke? Why so?
During the month of December, festivities start early. End of year parties are held during the middle of the month and people get to receive their salary at around the same time. Then boom, money illusion kicks in. Salaried employees start budgeting for the festivities forgetting that that salary is supposed to last them till the end of January the following year.
Most people often travel upcountry during the festive season. The transport sector usually is booming at that time since matatus and buses hike fares. This only forces people to dig deeper into their pockets. They take with them large shopping bags and give everyone upcountry tips since they think they are rich at that time. When the festivities are over, that is when reality kicks in, bills, bills and more bills to be settled.
Now they start rushing to borrow from friends who are equally (if not more) broke than they are. They result to borrowing from fintechs and shylocks hence adding to their burden of debt. Is it that people don’t have proper financial management skills or is it the fact that most people receive their December salary way too early?
Njaanuary sorted? How?
In comes this other breed of “ballers”. You’ll never hear a person from this category complaining about how hard life is. It’s not that they are rich and earn millions of money; they are just good managers of their finances. Somebody may wonder if they go clubbing and enjoy all the finer things in life during the festive season and the answer is yes.
What sets apart these two groups of people apart comes down to one thing; financial management skills. Are you an impulsive buyer who spends money on unnecessary things? Do you spend more than you earn? Are you a fanatical borrower ? Do you spend without planning first? If the answer to all these questions is yes, then you’ll be heard complaining year in, year out. Take charge of your financial situation today and the Njaanuary menace will be a thing of the past.