Black Friday marks the beginning of the Christmas shopping season. It also often marks the beginning of pre-Christmas panic. All of a sudden Christmas is less than four weeks away and there is a lot to do. The urgency and chaos that Black Friday creates doesn't help you to feel confident about the situation - in fact it makes you panic even more.
That's why this year I'm taking a different approach to the Black Friday Frenzy. An approach that will limit my stress around the day and stop me from getting impulse purchases that I'll regret. I recommend you do the same with these simple steps.
1. Plan your shopping list in advance - and stick to it.
Decide what you want to find deals on and in which shops or websites you want to go to in order to find them. Don't allow yourself to look at anything else. That way you won't get overwhelmed by all the offers being shouted at you because you can confidently say "I'm not interested."
2. Buy experiences rather than products.
If you really want to make purchases that you're less likely to regret, buy experiences. These are the purchases that are most likely to give you a triple happiness boost. You'll look forward to using them, you'll enjoy them when you're experiencing them, and you'll reminisce about them once they've passed.
3. If you're not sure about a purchase, it's a no.
Offers sometimes push you over the edge when you're sitting on the fence and you're not sure whether to buy or not. Don't let this happen to you. If you're not sure about something you're about to buy, ask yourself: "Would I buy this if this wasn't on sale?" If the answer is no, then don't buy it.
4. Keep calm & breathe.
Black Friday is just another marketing gimmick to get you to buy more. It's not a mountain lion chasing you down the street. So don't let the stress of it get to you. Start the day with meditation to focus your mind and set your intent for the day. Take breaks and some deep breaths in the midst of your shopping experience. That will lower your stress levels and prevent your adrenaline from rising to the level that it starts to take over your mind - and push you to shop faster and faster.
5. Don't lose perspective.
Remember that the holidays are meant to be all about love, goodwill and kindness - not about shopping till you drop or adding more urgency and stress into your life. Take advantage of the deals if you want - but remember that in the end it's not about what you buy but about how much love you share.
So go out, stay calm and stick to your plan. In the end, it's just shopping and you can do that any day of the year. Most importantly, remember Christmas is all about love - your loved ones would rather have you at their dining table than a pile of presents.