Avoid The Christmas Crunch
Avoid The Christmas Crunch
- December 2, 2018
- Posted by: Daniel McGregor
We’re about to enter the most wonderful time of the year! It’s a time of year when we usually have lots of fun, but also feel quite a bit of pressure. We all want to provide the best Christmas for our loved ones. We splurge, we impulse buy, we buy little extras here and there (and sometimes big ones).
We’ll be bombarded with ads telling us to buy more and more.
We’ll get to Christmas, have a great time and then be exhausted from the effort involved… Of course, it’s all worth it, that’s why we do it year after year.
Maybe it’s just me, but I see people around me who seem to find Christmas more and more stressful each year. There is a weight of expectation put on us by tv, social media and just the length of time we are now flooded with Christmas paraphernalia (wouldn’t it be great if we didn’t see anything about Christmas until the 1st of December!).
Eventually, we’ll get to the New Year and the realisation of the Christmas crunch will dawn on us as it does every year. So, let’s lessen the crunch this year with a little planning…
- SAY THE ‘B’ WORD OUT LOUD
Yes, ‘budget’ is a word everyone hates, but if you want to avoid the Christmas hangover and not have to play catch up in 2019, then spend a moment deciding how much money you are going to allocate to Christmas. This one, simple step is worth its weight in gold!
As a side note, I often have people tell me that Christmas costs them a fortune because of all the extended family they have to buy presents for. My advice… start a conversation! Can you and your family agree on a limit on how much to spend on each person? Could you do a Secret Santa/Kris Kringle? Could you just buy for those you’ll actually be spending Christmas with? Or only buy for the kids? Toss some ideas around.
- MAKE A LIST AND CHECK IT TWICE
Having a budget makes everything so much easier from there. You can then quickly work out how many people you need to buy for and how much you allocate to each. Don’t forget to set aside the money you’ll need to pay for the food, drinks and social events that need to be paid for over the festive season.
Write things down or keep a note in your phone. Just like with grocery shopping, if you don’t have a list you end up buying more than you needed or wanted to.
- AVOID CREDIT
It’s not always easy, but wherever possible avoid borrowing money to fund Christmas. The interest you’ll have to pay only means you’ll be deprived of things in the future.
- START PREPARING FOR CHRISTMAS 2019
I know, I know… we haven’t even got 2018 out of the way. However, if you put in place a plan for this Christmas you can then use that as the test case for next Christmas. As soon as we hit 2019, you can start putting a little aside each fortnight in a separate (fee-free) bank account and that will be your Christmas budget for the same time next year.
For all the joys of Christmas, it’s often a stressful time. Make it a lot less stressful by investing just a little time in mapping out your plan of attack. Try it out and I’d love to hear what works for you… shoot me an email at email@example.com and let me know.
We’re all busy and it feels like every year just gets busier but taking simple steps to prepare for Christmas ahead of time will make that precious time with family and friends the happiest time of the year.