Black Friday Shopping Tips

Living & Spending
on November 25, 2013

Whether you consider holiday shopping to be a daunting chore or a welcome challenge, it’s crucial to maintain a sense of perspective to avoid being overcome by the crowds and excitement of the season. Without a solid game plan in place, holiday shopping can be a slippery slope, often leading to drastic overspending in the name of Black Friday savings and seasonal discounts.

According to Steve Siebold, self-made millionaire and author of How Rich People Think, holiday shoppers spent the show-stopping sum of $59.1 billion on Black Friday alone in 2012. This year, for Black Friday and beyond, get back to basics with these 10 fundamental rules for no-nonsense holiday shopping, courtesy of Siebold himself.

  1. Don’t fall for marketing campaigns that make you feel as if you’re getting a great deal when you’re really not. For example, “buy today, pay tomorrow” deals aren’t really deals at all.
  2. Allocate a certain amount of money for each person you plan on buying gifts for, and don’t overspend by even a dollar.
  3. Don’t even think of using a credit card, unless you are 100% sure you can comfortably pay off your expenses at the end of the month.
  4. Don’t get caught up in the moment.  If your shopping cart is overflowing, step back, regroup and make sure you can afford everything you plan to purchase.
  5. Remember that kids learn by example.  Even parents who have failed to reach their financial dreams can teach their kids important lessons about money, especially during the holiday season.
  6. There’s no shame in telling people that this year will be a lean holiday season when it comes to exchanging gifts.
  7. Just like you would diet or exercise with a buddy to hold you accountable, shop with a friend to help keep you on track and prevent you from spending beyond your means.
  8. There are good deals to be had on Black Friday, but stay mentally tough to know when enough is enough.
  9. Ultimately, you should ask yourself if you would rather have the short-term satisfaction of expensive material possessions, or the long-term results of financial freedom and abundance.
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