The Christmas season can be expensive and many associate it with overspending. Just the thought of entering January with less savings and more debt, can be a source of extreme stress for most of us.
To ease the anxiety and achieve financial wellness, SamuelFields Consulting Group (SFCG), a team of financial wellness experts, encourages everyone to be more mindful and responsible about how they manage money during the Christmas season.
Here are 5 recommendations that you should consider to stay on track with your financial goals and build better financial habits:
1. You should have started planning for Christmas months well in advance and not wait until December. This way, you would have already had a head start in setting aside cash, to avoid the panic that typically comes with Christmas shopping. But all is not lost if you track your spending closely.
2. Make a list, check it twice and stick to it! You should never go grocery shopping on an empty stomach because you’ll end up buying more food than you originally planned. Neither should you do your Christmas shopping without a specific list of recipients and a corresponding budget.
3. Great gifts don’t need to be expensive. Look for low cost but high utility finds. If you are crafty, consider making something or giving something like a plant, that is sustainable. Gifts can also be non-material. During these tough times, a simple gesture or note of encouragement can mean the world to someone who is struggling.
4. Don’t go into debt just to impress people or to make them happy. This means that you shouldn’t feel obliged to give gifts if you really cannot afford it. If the gift giver is sincere and a real friend, they will not expect anything in return; just don’t forget to say ‘thank you.’
5. Financial responsibility entails a lot of self-reflection. When all the spending is done, reflect on what you could have done better and set your goals for next year. Think about where you can make improvements and what your financial goals are for the following year, so that you can start preparing well in advance.
A financial planner can help you outline your goals and assist you in making sense of your computations. At SFCG, we offer comprehensive financial advice, create recommendations and offer simple action steps to help you meet your financial goals.
“At SFCG we can assist you in getting a clearer picture about your financial status,” says Megan Samuel-Fields, CEO of SFCG. “Just in case you overspend or miss your financial goals this Christmas season, there are ways to change your financial plan and save more. You just have to bring an open mindset and be willing to make a few lifestyle changes.”
“We need to accept, without guilt, that Christmas can be a challenging time,” says Derede Whitlock, CMO of SFCG. “Being honest about our finances is the first step in accepting the reality of our situation, rather than adding additional pressure to it.”
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