South Africans are currently faced with the challenge of having to adapt to new ways of living due to Covid-19. Many have had to scale down, restructure their budgets and find new forms of income.

How do we get real about money matters after lockdown?  

We caught up withLiezel van der Westhuizen, a well-loved media personality in the South African radio and television media space, who is currently changing the marketing game like no one has ever done before. Liezel is a global motivational speaker and corporate coach, specialising in personal branding and speaker training.

But beyond fitness and radio, Liezel is fondly known to friends and fans alike as ‘The Giraffe’, a moniker she has also worked into the name of her personal vlog, Giraffe in the City. What many people may not know, is that the nickname was originally meant to be an insult.

Liezel offers 5 financial tips; this is what she had to say:

1. Re-think and adjusting your living standards

People are starting to re-think where they live, and how they live, as the dire economic implications of the global pandemic strain the means of millions of people. Now is the time not to adjust your living standards highly, but work to live more sustainably. Ask yourself the question of whether: there are things you could cut down, places you could realistically live more affordably in while still being relatively comfortable, and whether the standard of your living before the pandemic, was truly sustainable long-term.

2. Calculate your monthly expenses from your salary, and consider the leftover to be another expense you pay into “your” savings account.

Rather than paying your bills as they come, log all your expenses once a month (including a little bit for a treat, if we’re being real), and then consider what remains another expense which you deposit into the savings account. Do not consider what is in the savings account your money – write it off, and go live your life.

3. If the impulse comes along to buy something that is not a necessity, calculate whether you could afford to buy it twice.

This advice should hold you back from so many purchases that turn out to just be luxuries we don’t always even use regularly. This is the time to be frugal with money. 

4. Grocery lists bear new priorities

While it would be lovely to hang on to our brand loyalty when stocking up on groceries, the “new normal” in South Africa means that you are likely spending a little bit more of your time checking out more affordable alternatives to your favourites – this is wise. Now is the time to be more aware, and make compromises in order to not only survive this strenuous period in world history, but to thrive during it too.

5. Download the Expense Apps available to track your spending

When you see exactly what you buy, and just how much you buy of some things, you tend to slightly embarrass yourself into purchasing with better intention – even if it’s a mindset adopted for just one month. The Expense apps are very convenient for tax purposes too, as they log every aspect of your purchases.

For more tips and financial guides, follow Liezel on:

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