You have probably spent the last few weeks stating how thankful and grateful you are for all of the things in your life, but it is about that time for you to return to reality. You have several things you want, believe you need, and want to buy. All things considered, you are a part of a consumeristic society, why not take part in this religious ceremony called Black Friday. This is after all the precursor to the new year, new me balderdash and the several uncomfortable conversations about your finances.
Hopefully, you have been saving, or perhaps you received an early endowment of holiday funding. Either way, here are a few tips to overcome the challenges of Black Friday:
1 Know your budget…
and remain within your bud-get: A budget is an estimate of income and expenditure for a set period of time according to Dictionary.com. The keyword is estimate, that means you should create an ideal expenditure amount – the minimum that you expect to spend–and a maximum that you will spend–this is the worst-case scenario of spending. Having this ideal standard will remind you of the possibilities for later spending adventures, this will help you to not hate yourself past this one-day escapade. You may have great deals on Black Friday, but even greater deals can come later.
2. Remember that Black Friday is not the only opportunity for sales:
I have found that Black Friday is best for shopping for clothing, toys, and other gifts for the holiday season. However, there are several other seasonal sales throughout the year. As with most things, like music, the best things are not always the mainstream. Remember if you are shop- ping for yourself you can wait to buy yourself discounted items. Do not get caught up in the hype. Aforementioned, there are several other opportunities in every month to shop for things. In January, there are post-holiday season sales, so you can get things like Christmas decorations and other left-over sales from the gift rush in December. In February, there is discounted chocolate post-Valentine’s Day and there are Presidents’ Day sales. Presidents’ Day sales often include car sales, winter clothing sales, technology sales, household appliances, and of course mattresses. Similarly, in March and April there are several sales on winter clothing because winter is ending. In May, lies Memorial Day wherein there are similar sales to Presidents’ Day, along with some outdoor products for the ensuing summer. In June, there are more outdoor summer deals; followed by July, which has the deals on air conditioning. Followed
by August, which yields to the end of the fun in the sun and start of the new school year, these deals are marked with deals on school supplies and student deals galore for technology for education. In September, there are residual sales on clothing to continue the fresh look you may have forgotten about with the new year. Just remember not to buy white after Labor Day, unless it is a discounted mattress or a new iPad. With October, comes discounted candy sales for one day and an opportunity to buy a brand- new car. Here comes November and December, with Black Friday, Thanksgiving, and Christmas deals on the things consumers want, but do not necessarily need, feed your inner child or your cronies’ desires with these discounts.
3. Indulging in Black Friday:
So, if you do decide to indulge in Black Friday sales, here’s what you should do. First, return to tip one. Next, actually write down the things you want; if you have a list, you are less likely to impulse buy things when shopping. From here, create a game plan. Where and when are you buying what? Take the time you are spending to stalk your ex or avoid the final paper to check out those leaked prices online, this will help you to determine the places you need to hit or quit hitting. Print these pages and also the ads in the weekly newspaper, this will help to ensure that you have read the things you saw online clearly and ensure that you have a sound plan for the day of. On the day of, just bring a friend who is likeminded and who also has a sound plan. Bring that one friend who will act like your mom when you try to add things that are not on the list. Accountability is key.
Overall, always remember the principles of supply and demand. Just because you see the word sale, does not mean that there is actually a great sale. I have seen signs in Walmart that read “Roll-over Sale,” but only removed a penny from the initial cost. While there are sometimes great savings in the Black Friday sales, the greatest sale is saving your money for the things you actually need, like the books for the upcoming semester. So, before you buy that expensive item that reads “sale”, remember while it is important to treat yourself, remember the things you actually need. You can buy gifts for your loved ones or buy nice things for yourself; but through it all consider if you are buying into the consumeristic frame of mind that is directly correlated with this ceremony for this consumeristic nation of America.