Have you ever experienced a February, March... wishing you could have a Christmas do-over one where you’ve saved prior to the date and only bought what you could comfortably pay upfront for?
The expense of this festive season is well known. Yet many of us still have a knee-jerk reaction when the date is around the corner. “I can’t believe it’s nearly Christmas” “I’m not ready for Christmas”. It was reported that £800 was what the average UK family was planning on spending on Christmas last year!
All the well targeted TV adverts, newspapers, magazines, social media and internet pop-ups will be goading us to spend, spend, SPEND. And like a moth to a flame we empty our bank accounts, moving swiftly onto the old credit card. Participating with the spreading of good will and the spreading of the cost of Christmas- over the majority of the next year.
But we can pull the shutters down and lock out all that noise for a moment while we put a Christmas action plan together.
I think that these 5 action plan steps should be included;
Evaluate your cash flow – This way you can assess how much you can actually spend for Christmas.
Cut the cord on the obligation trap - Based off your calculated Christmas Budget decide on who you’ll be buying gifts for and how much you can afford to spend on them. Don’t fall into the obligation trap where you feel like EVERYONE you know and their pets should receive a present from you. When really, just the select few will do.
Make a list of likely expenses – Not only for presents but also be sure to include food, drink and any entertainment supplies.
Hosting the Chow Down – For me this would be like pulling the short straw as I am from a large family. For those hosting share the load by asking guests to bring dessert, salad, drinks, snacks etc. Therefore leaving you to only buy what you need (avoid excessive food shopping).
Use the competition to your advantage – At this festive season the supermarkets will be going head-to-head cutting prices in a bid to win us over. Check out the special offers and stock up.
Christmas can be the most stressful or the most wonderful time of the year. What theme will you aim for this year?