The Uber Frugal Month (UFM) January Group Challenge is my free, 31-day, email-based money management bootcamp and sign-ups are now open! You can register for the UFM anytime, but we take it as a huge, frugal group twice every year, in January and July. 

I created the UFM to help people:

  • better understand their finances
  • set goals around their money
  • change the way they approach spending and saving

The UFM is designed as a spending detox, but it goes way beyond that and delves into almost every aspect of how we relate to, and manage, our money.

Through this Challenge, we’re going to save money like nobody’s business (well, like our business, actually) and embark on a transformative journey to analyze the mechanics and mindset behind our spending. The UFM provides a re-set for the consumer carousel many of us get caught up in. It prompts you to think not only about where you’re spending your money, but why you’re spending it. Reforming your relationship with money isn’t just a question of spending less and saving more, it’s a question of performing a holistic reflection on your priorities and your emotional relationship to your money. The UFM guides you through this process.

Why Take A Money Management Challenge?

I mean, why not?!? How you manage your money has the power to dictate the type of life you’ll lead. Your money won’t make you happy, but it has the ability to make you profoundly unhappy.

Charting a proactive relationship with your finances is easier than most of us realize. It’s not a mysterious, shrouded, dangerous thing. It’s pretty straightforward. It involves some math. You might need to bust out a spreadsheet. But I’ll walk you through it during the Challenge.

I’m not a math major. I’m not a financial professional. I’m not even particularly good with numbers (hello, fellow calculator users everywhere). I explain money in a way that I understand. I don’t talk down to you–I talk at my level, which is pretty mediocre.

The group UFM kicks off on January 1st and you need to sign-up by December 31st to join us. If you do, you’ll be entered in a drawing to win…

A Prize!

In the spirit of the season, I’m giving away three prizes to three folks who sign-up for the January UFM:

Prize #1: A one-on-one basic financial consultation with me, AKA a private reader case study ($1,500 value!).

Prize #2: A spot in a UFM Mastermind Group ($300 value!).

Prize #3: A photo of my dog with a nametag on her head with your name written on it by my seven-year-old. You think I’m kidding? This kid LOVES putting nametags on this dog’s head (priceless value!).

To enter, sign-up for the Uber Frugal Month in the box below. I’ll choose three winners via random number generator on Monday, December 19th. If you’ve already signed up for the January 2023 UFM, you’re already entered in the drawing!

This Year’s UFM Theme: INFLATION!

Oh yeah, inflation baby! Much like a guest who drinks all your egg nog and then regales you with conspiracy theories, inflation appears to be overstaying its welcome. Since we can’t change the economy or impact global markets or stop inflation, all we can do is:

control how we respond to it.

The Uber Frugal Month is designed to help you weather any financial storm and inflation is just one more meteorological event to overcome. I’ve edited the UFM this time around to put special emphasis on how to combat inflation.

The UFM Will Help You Take Control Of Your Money

If your money is under control, YOU are under control. If your money is doing what you want it to do, YOU are doing what you want to do. Use your money wisely and LOVE the life you live.

You can either control your money, or it can control you.

The UFM helps you wrest back control of your financial life–however beastly it may be–and gives you the confidence and knowledge to create a more sustainable, fulfilling, and simple financial path forward.

Having your money in check allows you to pursue the things you love and create a life of reduced stress. Managing money well is a medium through which you can tap into deeper forms of self-care. It’s the bedrock foundation of overall health and well-being. 

Stop Waiting For Perfect

There’s no perfect time to start being frugal. There’s no perfect time to start managing your money. So, January 1, 2023 is as perfect a time as any! The UFM is also not perfect, but hey, it is free and it is what I’ve got!

The Uber Frugal Month resets your brain, and more specifically, your degree of hedonic adaptation. Through an Uber Frugal Month, you learn that not buying things isn’t difficult. You’ll realize that saving money can become your default approach. The UFM will help you understand your baseline spending each month and how quickly you can make progress towards your goals.

After the Challenge, you might decide you don’t want to live quite that frugally, but I can almost guarantee you won’t go back to spending as much as you did before participating in the Challenge. In general, with an Uber Frugal Month, you’ll find that your natural set point for spending has migrated to a more frugal level on the spending continuum. What you’ll then discover is that frugality isn’t just a way to save money, it’s a life philosophy you can apply to everything you do.

Join a UFM Mastermind Group

Brand new this year are UFM support groups! These small groups will meet with me (on video) once a week for the entire Challenge month. Each meeting will be a chance to delve deeply into the daily prompts, recommended reading and action items of the UFM. 

Since money is typically a forbidden conversation topic, many of us go through life wondering if we’re doing the right thing with our finances.

These groups are the place to talk about this forbidden topic. These groups are an outlet to vent your concerns and fears about your money. These groups are the chance to share your financial victories. It’s super awkward to stand up at a party, do the clink-clink thing and then say, “I just paid off all my debt!!!” But it won’t be awkward in these groups.

The deadline for joining a Mastermind group is Wednesday, December 28th so don’t delay and sign-up today so that we can all say, “hey hey!”

And Now For My World Famous FAQs!!!!

Not actually “world famous,” but sounds better than “non-world famous”…

Q: How do I enter the drawing to win a private financial consultation or spot in a Mastermind Group or dog foto?

Enter your email address in the box below. The three winners will be contacted on Monday, December 19th.

Q: What’s the UFM Again?

Not to be confused with Underwear Fang Monkeys or Universal Folk-dancing Moths, the Uber Frugal Month Challenge (UFM) is my FREE, 31-day holistic money re-vamp program. You can sign-up to take it at any time, but we take the UFM as a group twice a year, every January and July.

This January will be the SIXTH consecutive year for the Uber Frugal Month and I’m honored and delighted that hundreds of thousands of frugal folks from across the world have participated over the years, saved hundreds of thousands of dollars AND revolutionized their relationship to money. WOOHOO!!!! A few years ago, I launched a private Facebook group for UFM participants to share ideas, discuss challenges and be in community together.

Q: How do I join the private Uber Frugal Month Facebook group?

You’ll receive a link to join in your welcome email after you sign-up for the UFM.

Q: Do I need to use Facebook (or other social media) in order to participate?

Nope! The Challenge is conducted entirely via email and here on Frugalwoods. The UFM Facebook Group is an optional bonus. No need to sign-up for Facebook in order to participate in the UFM. All you have to do is sign-up with your email address in the box below.

Q: How do I sign-up for a Mastermind Group?

  1. Go here to select, and pay for, the group you’d like to join.
  2. Once you’re registered, you’ll receive an email confirmation with the date, time and link for our first video call.
  3. Email me if you have any questions about the groups or problems with the sign-up process (

Q: If I’ve already taken the UFM, can I take it again?

Absolutely! I had my tech guy (AKA Mr. Frugalwoods) set up the email thing-y such that you can sign-up to re-take the Challenge with the same email address you used to take the Challenge previously. You do, however, need to sign-up again in order to join us starting January 1st.

Real Live People Love The UFM!!!

Fun as it is to read what I write (right?!), it’s even MORE fun to read what other people (real, live people!) have said about their participation in the Uber Frugal Month Challenge. Lucky for you, I’ve collected testimonials from past Challenge participants who’ve written heartfelt notes about how the UFM changed their finances and ultimately, their lives. Here are but a few selected for your enjoyment and published with permission.

Karen wrote:

This Uber Frugal month has been transformative. As a sixty-plus, recently divorced woman receiving no alimony, I had been very, very worried about my future.  I am financially okay as long as I work, meaning I could never retire… On Jan first I started a journal, dedicating a page to each UFM day. I now have a picture of the important and big goals, rendering the immediate gratification items unappealing. I’m fine-tuning areas where I can improve and celebrating those I already do.
My mindset has truly changed, and already I feel more in control and relieved.  

I believe now that I  will be able to retire from teaching (math and statistics) in a few more years at 65 or 66.  I’m now excited about my future, and feeling a freedom in my job I hadn’t felt before. No longer feeling trapped, I’m enjoying every single day right now.  Thank you SO much, Mrs. Frugalwoods, and all of you in this community. Also:  I had felt very alone on this journey until this group, with you.

Donna shared:

This was a wonderful challenge after Christmas spending. Also this year, I read all the suggested readings, it really did make a difference. I have to admit in the past to skimming through and saying, I’ll read it later, I read it. Lots of food for thought and greatly appreciated! I had a very frugal January, I’m half expecting the Amazon guy to do a wellness-check 🙂  Now though, I have money set aside for car/house insurance due next month, without resorting to taking money out of long-term savings.
It was refreshing to read the Facebook comments and find a kind and like-minded group of frugal friends, (first time for Facebook group).   I cannot thank you enough for doing this, and it’s FINALLY sticking.

Karly said:

Once again, I enjoyed an UF January with you. Always a good reminder of the things I already know and also learn new things about myself and my relationship to money and things. Thank you for the beautifully written daily messages. 

Kate reported:

I have done this challenge a few times now and enjoy following along. I always learn something new and learn where I can do better. My realizations this month:
  • I brought along a co-worker with me for this months challenge and we discussed our progress a couple of times a week which was fun. She is just discovering the world of FIRE so seeing her eyes open up on many of these issues and how her life could change was really awesome.
  • I realized I have continued to make progress since I started following you.
  • Much of this has become a way of life for me and I don’t feel deprived but more centered and happy.

CJ wrote:

This month has helped me shift my wasteful online shopping habits to use the time in more enjoyable ways. I’m planning on holding on to a lot of mindset changes and getting my partner on board more. He agreed to cancel Amazon Prime the other day, which was a win. I cancelled all sorts of other monthly items (like a subscription to Sirius xm) and still need to make the mobile phone plan move. As you’ve said, it’s about the long game!

Sandra shared:

Thank you for what you do to help educate, inspire and motivate others to change their financial lives for the better!  I finally did it!!!  I changed cell phone providers and this has been on my “to-do” list for years.  I can’t wait to save even more money.
I am excited by the possibilities to live a life based on my values, not based on what others want or expect from me 🙂

Joyce wrote:

I think this was my third time participating.  I have been on a frugal journey based on your guidance for the past three years. After this last month, I realized that it is finally ingrained and I am happy with it, myself and my life.  My husband and I no longer give gifts to each other, instead we plan an event for each other.  Less money and more fun.  As an added bonus, we have saved so much money that we don’t have to worry about an emergency or debt.  It’s a weird thing- having money in the bank has made us less interested in spending money.

K.A. said:

I appreciated the ideas you shared and how each step was very “doable.”  I have changed my thinking around my spending habits and no longer see not spending as sacrifice, but rather an opportunity to embrace what is most important to me.
Too often financial advice is preachy or even demeaning – so I appreciate you making the content friendly and accessible- and realistic! I’m a frugal convert!

Jamie reported:

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! It has surprised me how easy it was to not buy anything but food. I do have a long way to go on that front but I’m excited for the challenge. I feel this is a lifestyle to work toward & that is why I thank you. I absolutely love the Facebook community you have created also. Makes me feel warm & fuzzy!

D.C. said:

Just a thank you for this month’s challenges and insights. The inherent kindness of your messages makes things seem manageable and possible. As does your book. I’m not where I want to be yet in terms of frugality, but working on it again and again until it’s second nature.
Uber Frugal Month: we will do this together

Mary shared:

This was a terrific challenge. I have been an ardent fan and admirer for a while. These posts gave good practical advice but were also thought-provoking. It really does all begin and end with how we think through what we do with money, doesn’t it?

Allison wrote:

Just wanted to say thank you for hosting the Uber Frugal Month again. It’s much more fun when it feels like we’re all in this together. We thought we were already as frugal as we could be but at the end of this month we were shocked to find we had an extra £344 to add to our savings.


  1. Sign-up in the box below to join the January 2023 UFM Group Challenge!
  2. UFM = Uber Frugal Month, not Underwear Fang Monkeys OR Universal Folk-dancing Moths
  3. Join a UFM Mastermind Group here
  4. Enter to win a private financial consultation or spot in a Mastermind Group or personalized dog foto by joining the UFM Challenge (just sign-up in the box below)

Who is ready to Uber Frugal it up with me in January????!!!!!

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  1. “Much like a guest who drinks all your egg nog and then regales you with conspiracy theories, inflation appears to be overstaying its welcome.”… sentence ever!! 😄 I’ve been following your blog since you lived in Cambridge. Love how your blog has evolved over the years. Looking forward to this coming UFM; I’ve been doing them with you for years! (I FI/RE’d a decade ago 😊)

    1. Oh awesome, congrats Sherry! And thank you for taking the Challenge again :). I do love egg nog, but….. 😉

  2. Super excited for 2023. We are doing a total financial reset. No debt Thank goodness, but we need to do a better job saving.

  3. I’m looking forward to joining in for the Uber frugal month challenge again. I’ve joined in for every one of them since you started it. It’s always a great reset on spending in alignment with values. Thank you for all your hard work on it! Especially the Facebook group 🙂

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