If you’re anything like me (or past me, at least), the holidays can put a hurting on your budget. Between Christmas gifts, personal gifts, stocking stuffers, and sales galore, it’s easy to find yourself in debt during the holidays. Trust me…I was there. Black Friday was my time to buy gifts…for myself! I would buy other people gifts too, but I’m not going to lie – it was mostly for me.
I want you to learn from my mistakes! That’s why I’m sharing 5 reasons not to go into debt during the holidays. It can be exhilarating to get caught up in the shopping swirl, but if it’s not under control, it’ll add up quickly. Keep reading for my top 5 reasons not to go into debt during the holidays!
#1 Your Friends and Family Wouldn’t Want You To
Let’s get honest with ourselves here. You know your friends and family wouldn’t want you to go into debt just for them (and if they do, that’s another problem). So, why do you find yourself going into debt every holiday season because of gift-giving? It’s because you’re likely using “friends and family” as a justification for your spending.
I know. The truth hurts. But I’ve been there too, so I’m allowed to say it. We get a thrill from spending money and we make it okay to do when it’s for other people. The reality is that your family and friends wouldn’t want you to take on debt, just to shop for them. When you accept what’s really happening, you can start making changes. Just know that your family and friends would rather you be financially free, then falling behind to buy them gifts.
#2 Don’t Start the New Year Behind (or Further Behind)
It can be easy to use Christmas as the “last sha-bang”! The last time to go all out with your spending before you start fresh for the new year. Don’t do it. Not only does it hurt your budget in the present, but it also puts you further behind when the new year does come. When you take the time to assess the financial damage, the wound is heavy.
Avoid going into debt during the holidays so that you can start the new year off on the right note. Start the new year off by already being in a better place. I work with so many clients that just need that simple tweak in mindset for it to click. Justifying bad behavior in preparation for a fresh start is the worst thing you can do.
This doesn’t just apply to money. The same goes for your diet. Eating everything in sight before the new year makes it so much harder to get motivated when the new year comes. Start doing what you’re supposed to do before the new year comes and you’ll make continuing that much easier.
#3 The Holidays Aren’t Worth Going into Debt
Before you have the chance to argue with me, take a step back. The holidays come around every single year. That means you have plenty of holiday seasons (God-willing) to show that you care. You don’t need to go into debt this holiday season (or any holiday season) because there will always be more. The holidays aren’t worth going into debt for.
In fact, it’s hard for me to think of anything that warrants going into debt just to take advantage of the spending. When you get out of the mode that you need to buy so many things during the holidays, you can see the bigger picture. There will be plenty of chances to make the most of the holidays and still come out on top financially.
#4 The Cycle Needs to Be Broken
The last reason transitions nicely into this one. The cycle needs to be broken. When you realize the holidays aren’t worth going into debt for, and there will always be another holiday season next year, you can start facing the facts. You can get out of the fantasy-land you’ve been living in every holiday season that leaves you with more debt.
If you can’t break the cycle now, with the money you make now, how do you plan to do it when you make more money. It only makes sense that you’ll spend more money and accumulate more debt – because you haven’t fixed the true issue. Make conscious efforts to break the cycle now and you’ll see how you can master holiday season spending.
#5 Start Putting Your Well Being First
The last reason not to go into debt during the holidays is YOU! Your own well-being. A life of debt is not a quality life. Start putting your needs first. You don’t need to go into debt to show someone else you care about them. Those that care about you will want you to succeed, anyways. Think about your own financial future and do the things that will put you in the best position possible. That means, controlling your spending during the holidays.
Take it from me, nothing is worth adding onto your debt – especially the holidays. There will be plenty more holiday seasons for you to treat the ones you love, the right way (AKA without accruing debt). Do your best to budget and stick to your limits. It’s worth it! Have you ever gone into debt (or more debt) during the holidays? How was your experience? Leave a comment below to share!