Christmas comes once a year, but if you aren’t ready for it financially it can seem like the season came out of nowhere. You planned to save up for the holidays but life got in the way and now it’s time to buy gifts with less money than you bargained for. You’re not alone. Quite a few people experience holiday spending anxiety.
According to The Network Journal, just before the 2015 holiday season, over 40 percent of people felt pressure to spend more than they could afford for the holidays, 50 percent felt anxiety about holiday shopping, and 60 percent said holiday shopping was going to hurt them financially. The CGS Team is sharing a few tips to help you avoid holiday spending anxiety and bounce back financially.
Revisit Your Budget
Regardless of what time of the year it is, you should always follow a budget. We’re going to assume you have one and not lecture you on the importance. To help curb anxiety for holiday shopping, give your budget a glance as early as possible.
What can you cut back to help you pay for holiday gifts? Can you pay the minimum payments on your cards to help give you some extra wiggle room? Looking at your budget will allow you to see what you really can afford to spend. That gives you a place to start when planning your purchases.
You don’t have to give everyone lavish and expensive gifts for the holidays. Get creative and save money by thinking outside of the box. Consider making a body scrub or shower gel for each of your friends and family thanks to Lush Cosmetics. Make monogrammed candles, mini gift baskets, or ceramic mugs. These gifts are truly one of a kind and don’t have to cost a fortune.
Times are tough, especially during the holidays. Your friends and family certainly wouldn’t want you going into debt just to buy everyone gifts. Be honest and let your loved ones know that you have a very tight budget for the holidays.
Those who care will understand. Remember that small gestures go a long way – Christmas cards are a simple but effective gesture. Check out DIY Christmas Cards for some cute ideas on making your own holiday cards.
Improve for Next Year
It may be too late to plan for your holiday spending this year, but you can certainly improve your planning process for next year! Open a savings account for gifts and holiday shopping. Starting with your first paycheck of the new year, have $25-$50 go into the account.
Keep it that way until the end of the year. If you don’t use the savings throughout the year, you will have $500-$1000 in the account come next year’s holiday season! That’s more than enough to spending on gifts. Let this year’s planning serve as an eye-opener for the importance of budgeting and saving for the holidays.
Related: 6 Ways to Save During the Holidays
Don’t put yourself deeper into debt just to give great gifts this holiday season. Be honest with yourself and others and get creative with what you can give. How do you avoid holiday-spending anxiety? Do you give yourself a budget on what to spend on holiday shopping? Share some of your DIY or low-cost gift ideas by leaving a comment below!