From the smell of holiday cookies and cakes (Yum!), to the sound of Christmas carols and holiday movies (Yay!) and Christmas being just around the corner who wouldn’t want to give into the temptation of such a joyful and hopeful disposition.
But before you lose yourself in the euphoria of the season and adopt insanity as your best friend for the next month, remember that there is life after the holidays and what you choose to do today will most certainly affect you tomorrow.
So, before you hit the pavement and open your purse or wallet to whatever blows your way, here are a few tips that will not only help you make sound decisions, but will also have long-term benefits.
- Use the debit side and avoid the credit side of the card.
- With debit, you are in a position to use only what you have and it’s instantaneous, so you see it immediately.
- With credit, you can end up going over your amount; and because it’s not taken out of your account straightaway, you may miscalculate and think you have more in your account then you really do.
- Sit down with a nice cup of coffee or tea, a pen and paper or your tablet, and make a detailed list of who you’re going to purchase a gift for.
- Do not forget to include your mail carrier, work gift exchange, family gift exchange, etc.
- Completing the steps above, will help you stay focused.
- Know your budget, and set a specific amount for each individual.
- Do not forget to include tax.
- Once you begin shopping, do not veer from the budget. It you’ve decided on $10, then keep it at $10 and don’t go over that amount; but you can certainly go under and save some money.
- Do your research.
- Know what items you want to purchase.
- Shop around online, or call around to see who has the best deals.
- Find out the benefits for each store you’ll be making a purchase in.
- Example – the store you’re in may offer free gift wrapping. If they do, take advantage of this perk, because it will save you money, and will allow you to put your savings towards something else.
- During the holiday shopping season, a lot of stores will immediately print up a gift receipt in lieu of the actual priced receipt.
- Remember to request the actual receipt with the price printed on it.
- It will ensure that the person returning the gift will get the full value amount, versus the after holiday sale amount.
Then, Get Ready, Get Set, Let’s Smart Shop!
Here’s To Your Health!!!
Stephanie B. Davis
**Disclaimer: Please pray and ask God for direction and always consult a doctor before starting any new regimen.**
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