I so wish I could stop the commercialism in Christmas.
The pressure of trying to find the elusive “perfect gift” creates so much stress. If only that gift wasn’t so expensive, or I had more money, things would be so much easier.
I used to go crazy trying to save money for Christmas presents – and put myself in a financial bind for several months. I would console myself with the fact that some of my friends spent an entire year paying off their Christmas bills! Then, I finally came to grips with the fact that I was spending more than I could afford and it had to stop.
The pressure is on
The pressure never came from my kids or Ron—it was all around me. Every commercial, ad, and flyer was bullying me into over-spending. I was so relieved when I learned to stay within my budget and still get presents I felt really good about giving. And still have money to pay for the important things – like phone calls and gas for visits!
Money Saving tips
If you are struggling with how to give great gifts without blowing your budget, I have some tips for you.
- It really is the thought that counts—however you don’t want to give a gift that is not wanted. In order to avoid wasting your money, do NOT buy things just because they are on sale and then figure out who to give them to later. That almost never goes well.
- Only buy things on sale/clearance. This takes planning and time, but is well worth the effort. Check online, check flyers and ads and then go scoop up that deal.
- Make all of your presents. For many years, my sons made all of our presents. We made ornaments and put names and years on them for all of the cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents. They all still have them and say they treasure them. You could also make baked goods, wreaths, candle holders, and many other fun crafts. Check Pinterest for lots of good ideas.
- Make a list of who you want to buy a gift for and how much you can spend on each of them. Don’t add people out of obligation. Only give gifts that are from the abundance of your heart, not the pressure from marketing.
- Limit both the amount of money you spend AND the number of gifts you will give. We can spend a lot of money on a bunch of little stuff because we keep buying things. Pick a number of presents and stick to it while staying in your budget.
- Buy things at the end of the season and put them away for the next Christmas.
With a little planning, you can eliminate the stress of the Holidays and enjoy the time with your family and friends.
I am rooting for you!