The time of the year is here again, and businesses are doing better as they return to 100% production capacity. Your company closed last year with good sales and is back in the black. Yes, it’s bonus cheque time!
It’s been a tiring slog the last two years. Yes, you’ve been lucky to stay employed/get a new job in the middle of a global pandemic, but this year’s bonus will be your first in a long time. Why not treat yourself?
There’s been a lot of talk of “revenge spending/shopping/travel”, meaning people coming into a windfall (such as a bonus) and emerging from Covid-19 isolation are spending aggressively on items they missed out on during the past few years.
Of course you should treat yourself! You’re human, after all. You definitely need a reward for making it through a once-a-century event, and if you – like many others – have been pulling double and triple duty during the pandemic, certainly a holiday is not out of the question.
However, “treating yourself” also means taking care of yourself. So, while you’re heading for a relaxing spa or massage for your physical health, make sure to set aside part of your bonus for your financial health. Take care of your finances as well, especially if you want to be better prepared for the next big event.
Make a Wish (List)
There are many ways to treat yourself while setting aside sums for the future. Some divide their bonuses by percentages, others choose to sort out urgent needs (such as that loan restructuring you had to go through), and others still prefer to optimise their taxable income.
Whatever your personal preference, sorting out how to best spend your bonus starts with being your own Santa Claus: making a list. Start by listing all your spending/investment options, from needs and wants, to paying down debts, setting aside savings, and investing long-term.
Once you’ve made your list (and checked it twice), figure out how much money each item requires, and arrange them by priority. These may differ based on your long-term goals (retire by 60 or set up your kid’s education fund) to identify which options make the most sense to maximise your bonus cheque.
Here are a few ideas for your list: