Russia’s invasion of Ukraine prompted a huge surge in food and fuel prices that has threatened the economic outlook of many countries across the globe, including those across Africa.

This has unfortunately occurred just as growth was starting to recover post COVID-19 meaning it couldn’t have come at a worse time.

The combined effects of these two historical events will be deeply consequential.

Standards of living are likely to fall and macroeconomic imbalances will occur. It’s pushed people into poverty, and even if you didn’t badly struggle financially before, there’s a good chance that you now will.

Just about everyone should attempt to take some kind of action in regards to their finances, while this isn’t something that’s easily solved there are a few things you can do. Here are some ideas. 

Go through your finances

First things first, go through your finances with a fine tooth comb. Work out exactly what you have coming in, and what goes out.

Using a personal finance app can be useful for this, these bring together information from all of your banks and credit accounts and make it easy to visualise everything at a glance.

If you have any subscriptions you’re not getting enough use out of then cancel them. Run utility bill quotes through price comparison sites to get the best rates. Check out where you’re overspending, that way every penny can be put to the best use. 

Make changes to your lifestyle

Some changes you could make to your lifestyle which would positively impact your budget include:

-meal planning and shopping for groceries more carefully

-switching to supermarket’s own brands

-reusing and repairing items rather than always buying new

-making your own coffee at home instead of daily coffee shop visits

-staycation at home rather than vacations abroad

There are big and small things you can do depending on how much you need to save, generally cutting back on luxuries (at least for a while) and finding cheaper alternatives to the things you love will be effective. 

Earn extra money from home

Finally, having a side hustle can generate extra income which is useful when you need to give your budget a boost.

It could be anything from starting a home-based business buying and reselling items, to blogging or freelance work. Have a think about the specific skills you have and how you can monetise these.

If you want to earn more of a passive income, you could look into ETF trading or crypto. There’s plenty of advice online that’s worth reading through to see if this is the best method for you.

Having an additional stream of income could help to cover the extra costs of inflation and ensure you keep your head above water financially.

What steps have you taken to help deal with the cost of living crisis?