Get Your Holiday Shopping Done Early to Avoid Overspending this Christmas Season
Believe it or not, Christmas is only two weeks away. This leaves only 14 more shopping days until the big day, and the stress level of the general public (aka those of us that don’t have our Christmas shopping done yet) is reaching its annual high. With stores offering sales shoppers “can’t” refuse, malls being overcrowded this time of year, and individuals rushing to finish their shopping on time, it is certain that many people will fall victim to compulsive shopping.
Dictionary.com defines a compulsion as “a strong, usually irresistible impulse to perform an act, esp. one that is irrational or contrary to one’s will.” In other words, people that ordinarily watch their money carefully, will make rushed decisions they may regret later. As the number of shopping days decreases not only will people be less likely to shop around for the best deals, but they will also pay for conveniences they ordinarily wouldn’t need, such as in-store wrapping and super-rush deliveries.
How can we avoid overspending due to compulsive shopping?
- Begin Christmas shopping early. Shop earlier in the season to avoid feeling rush and to steer clear of the crowded malls during the holiday season.
- Plan ahead! Before heading to the mall or making a purchase online, have an idea of what you’d like to get each person on your list. This will help narrow your focus so that you are not distracted by beautiful displays or flashy sales tactics.
- Put some thought into your holiday budget. If you have an idea of how much you’re planning to spend on each person, this will help you control the overall amount you spend this season, and also help you plan out the type of gift you may want to give your friends and family.
- Carefully select your plan of attack. Only choose stores that you can afford and that you know will offer you a good value.
Finally, remember that it’s the thought that counts. While it may sound like a clich, the saying has survived so long because it is true. At Christmas and the rest of the year, it does not matter how much you spend on a gift. What people value most is the thought you put into it and your effort.
UPDATE (Dec. 12, 2006): We wanted to apologize to those readers of 22Dollars using Internet Explorer and trying to leave a comment. We have recently identified an issue preventing users of Internet Explorer from posting comments and fixed the problem. Thank you for your patience and we look forward to hearing what EVERYONE has to say from now on!