Our expert says:
I'm a financial idiot, but I'm sure other readers will come up with some helpful suggestions.
I might comment that some of the expenditure you describe is not actually compulsory - there's not really a need to give expensive birthday and Christmas presents, and even a holiday isn't always essential, when one can have a pleasant and cheaper time at home, when cash is scarce.
All of these are NICE, but not essential.
I gather that paying off your debts is more profitable overall than investments, and of course far more so than buying things as gifts for other people.
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