By Lisa Osiako
I had not heard about the words “Christmas Bonus,” until the day I got my first job. It is then that I started my research on what really goes into these bonuses. I also kept wondering whether the bonus was a way of getting an early salary, thus eliminating the end month salary.
The bonuses are a reward system for hardworking employees, and they range from the generous to the extravagant. Earning an unexpected financial reward is a great opportunity to plan and put your personal finance in order.
It is that time of the year again and many of us have already planned what we will do with the bonuses we get.
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Here are a few tips on how best you can put it to use:
Clear your debt
Many of us have a habit of taking loans and then repaying them at the end of the month using our salaries.
You may have taken that debt a while ago, and pushed paying it back especially with all the plans that go into the festive season. Every time you get a call from those following up on their money, you either disconnect it, or simply ignore the call. This is because; you already know what they want.
You can however use your Christmas bonus to clear all your debts and eliminate you from the risk of being involved with the CRB. If you have many debts to offset, prioritize them in order of what needs to be paid almost immediately.
Christmas is all about the joy and love that comes from sharing. It is that time of the year where you can appreciate all the people who have been part of your success. This time round, contribute to a charity that speaks to you. Is it donating to relief organizations, refugee camps, children’s homes, people that need help with medical bills and others? Then simply do it.
Also, invest in relationships by showing your gratitude. You don’t have to give expensive gifts. A simple token of appreciation that you did not forget them during this holiday season should be sufficient.
Saving is a topic we cannot exhaust. It is one of those skills many of us need, but lack. This holiday season, try and beef up your savings with the bonus you are expecting to get. You could be simply saving towards a holiday, or your usual savings, but just do it.
Realizing the need to save your extra cash doesn’t mean that you can’t spend money for your family. You can budget a portion of the cash to celebrate the holidays but invest a bulk of it wisely to make sure that the money will grow and last for a long-time.
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Reward yourself (responsibly)
Being the holiday season, we are likely to spend quite a huge amount on things that are not really necessary. You can decide to reward yourself, but do it all in a responsible way, that will leave you looking back without regret at how your bonus was spent.
Buy yourself a book that will build you, also take a few days off and relax, as you set your New Year’s goals. Simply do the things that at the end of the day will make your pocket happy too.
Ensure you make the best out of your Christmas bonus this time round. As much as it is bonus money, spend it on what counts. Financial freedom comes from knowing how to spend your money wisely, no matter where it comes from. Happy Holidays!!