‘Tis the season to be shopping, usually for others, but with so many great “deals” available during Black Friday, it can also turn into a time to feed our own desire for things we didn’t even know we wanted – further complicating the situation. And with so much spending going on it’s easy to get off centered – with our budget and with our need to consume; and the “sales” overload doesn’t help.
The sales trap is a lucrative technique for retailers, and for good reason. “Sales” are often the bait that hook you into making random and unnecessary purchases that you believe will only be available during this time of year – though this may be the case at times, it’s a concept that is not always true.
So, with the ever-present occurrence of sales, our need to fulfill our own desires and the desires of others with gifts, shopping this time of year can be a truly stressful situation. But, if we approach this big shopping day in a more mindful way, we can eliminate some of that stress and end the year without feeling completely defeated. Here are 8 mindful shopping tips for Black Friday that will keep your wallet and your mind on the right track:
1. Examine your needs
Ask yourself this question: what do I need to buy? If you go into your shopping trip knowing what you need versus what you want, it can go a long way in keeping you on track and focused on the items you need to purchase.
2. Price check
Searching for the items you have in mind ahead of time – online or otherwise – is a great way to compare prices before spending unnecessary amount of money on any one item.
3. Think about others
It’s easy to shop for yourself because you know exactly what you like and what you want. However, in order to mindfully shop, it’s important to remember who you are shopping for and to forget about yourself for the moment.
4. Have a budget
Having a budget when shopping is a bit of a no-brainer. It sets expectations prior to spending and keeps you on track. Always have a budget.
5. Bring cash
As we all know, once you start swiping your credit card, it can be easy to loose track. Instead, try bringing your shopping budget in cash. That way, you can’t purchase any more than what you planned for that day.
6. Have backups
Have a gift idea in mind for someone? Well, if for some reason you can’t find said gift, it makes sense to have a backup. That way, you’re not killing your budget buying unplanned gifts just so you can check that person off of your “to-do” list.
7. Plan your trip
Shopping anywhere during the holiday season is hectic. Even going to your local target can be overwhelming and crowded. But here’s a tip, don’t shop at prime times. A great time to shop is right when the store opens because it’s less crowded, but also because everything is in stock. Most people like to sleep in and then shop later in the day, beat them to the punch and rest later instead.
8. Be mindful
A successful Black Friday is not just about spending copious amounts of money. It’s about finding gifts you know will benefit, change or enhance someone’s life – even in the smallest way – without breaking the bank or your spirit.