The pressure from the media to spend, spend, spent is relentless. Shops give ‘free’ credit (as long as you spend a certain amount and until Jan/Feb 2012 when a high interest rate starts up).
There is the expectation from friends, family and co-workers for gifts. There is extra food and entertaining, then what are you going to wear? On and on the costs go. And our money is tighter than ever and has to go further than ever, jobs are precarious. Do NOT let yourself be swept away with the buying frenzy. It is even easier to over-spend on-line, where just a click here and there and then an enticement to just add this and that – all painlessly placed on a card or PayPal and delivered to your door – no problem. That is until you look at your bank balance.
You can probably add some more COST horrors as well. So, what to do?
Mind Chi Holiday Happiness – STOP!
STOP! Yes! Just STOP right there, right now and THINK before you rush headlong into the frenzy of DOING. A little time to take the reins of control NOW will give you MONTHS of happiness later. Well worth while.
Look at your FINANCIAL BIG PICTURE – that will mean a REAL look at your bank balance.
How much is in there? How long must it last? How much is on your credit card(s)?
When are you next paid? Therefore, how much is the MAXIMUM you can spend.
IF you find you have some pennies to spare (or have saved for this occasion **well done!) then
MAKE A LIST of the MOST important ones to buy for and the maximum to be spent on their gifts.
THINK and RESEARCH options and best prices for those gifts.
This year everyone will understand if you say, ‘Might we agree to skip the gift giving this year?’
A gift for the persons birthday – their special day – is more appropriate that the commercial holiday hype.
A gift of some time or (don’t shudder) something you made gets you both off a hook neither of you
Now, we are not spoilsports and you may ENJOY the holiday shopping frenzy, if so decide how much
you can spend (this is on frivolous things, not the selected gifts) and take JUST that amount in CASH.
Placed very carefully where it can’t be snatched. Off you go to the shops and have yourself some fun!
STOP when the cash is gone. Forbid yourself to use your card (don’t even take it!)
And RESIST ‘If you take out a XXXX card, you’ll get 10% off all you have just bought’.
Do NOT take any new credit cards.
To recap, for Mind Chi Holiday Happiness to overcome the Horror of the COST of the Holiday:
1. STOP! Think before you DO another thing.
2. Look at your FINANCIAL BIG PICTURE, how much can you actually afford to spend now?
3. Always make a LIST of the important gifts to buy. Keep to your list.
4. RESEARCH the options to find the best source for those gifts.
5. Suggest that you SKIP giving gifts this year – bet they’ll love you for it.
6. Only partake of the holiday shopping frenzy (if you do like it) with CASH.
7. Never take out a new CREDIT CARD offered by a shop.
8. Consider a NON-MONETARY gift (time with the person next year; make or do something for them)
(c) Mind Chi 2011