Fall happens to be one of my favorite times of the year. As the leaves start falling off of the trees, the temperature gets colder. The holiday cheer and generosity starts to show especially in New York. Living in New York has made me love this time of the year especially because of how it transforms the whole mood of the city. The lights on 6th avenue with all of the amazing food and the chestnuts roasting on an open street cart. lol, I’m painting a picture here, but let me get to the realness.
Statistics show this is the time of the year where most people get into the most credit card debt. Call it the most debt-filled time of the year. This is because consumer purchases are at an all-time high since there’s so much pressure to purchase gifts. Think about the number of ads that flash in front of your eyes on a daily basis after October 31st, encouraging you to make a purchase. These ads are strategic because they know it’s the season of giving. Yup, you are being targeted a lot more during this time of year, which is why you should begin to prepare.
LEARN FROM YOUR MISTAKES
During Christmas, I used to get a little swipe happy. I had the mentality of “I’ll just purchase it now on my credit card and pay it off later.” That pay it off later meant months or even years later. Then something hit me and I realized going into debt for gifts was not where it’s at. This is why I started planning months in advance a few years ago. It’s great because now I don’t feel pressure because a plan is in place.
Let’s rebuke credit card debt in the name of yourself. If you’re not sure how to get started? I got you. Here are 3 tips on how to survive the holidays without going into debt:
1. MAKE A LIST AND CHECK IT TWICE
The first step is figuring out how much money you realistically want to spend. Once you have that magic number start creating a list of people you will be buying gifts for. Don’t forget to include yourself on that list because you should get yourself something nice. Then either ask everyone what they want or create a budget for each person that does not max out your overall magic number.
2. PUT IT IN YOUR GLOW UP PLAN AKA BUDGET
Now that you’re getting an early start you should put that overall number into your budget. If you plan on buying all the gifts by x date make sure it lines up for when you want to purchase. An easy thing to do so you don’t spend that money is to open up a holiday savings account and start stashing money away like yesterday. The earlier the better.
3. EARLY BIRD GETS THE WORM
Start saving early but also start buying your gifts early too. I know I said this on the last point, but I’m gonna say it again. Don’t wait last minute. Usually, when you do, you end up buying random things you don’t need because of the gazillion sales that are going on. Plus the last thing you want to do is worry about your packages not coming in on time or the mall being sold out of the thing you want. Save yourself the stress. The holidays should be a loving and stress-free time. I mean every day should be a loving and stress-free, but you get what I mean. If you set yourself up with a plan accordingly you won’t have to worry about a thing.
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