Ok, raise your hand if you have a foolproof way to remember what everyone wants, how much you have to spend, and where to buy it. Go ahead, I’ll wait…
I counted two hands. For you two amazingly organized people, this blog will probably bore you or make you laugh uncontrollably. For the rest of you, stay tuned because this may help you add a little structure to what is likely a painful experience – shopping for everyone at Christmas.
TIP 1: Open LifeJournal to the FAMILY FOUNDATION GOAL SETTING and FINANCES FOUNDATION GOAL SETTING pages. On the FAMILY page, use the various sections (Timeframe, What, How, Who, etc) to write out your Christmas list in detail. You may not know some of the details but write out as much as you do know. On the FINANCES page, do the same except decide how much money you can legitimately spend on those you’re buying for this year. Again, use as many of the headings as are necessary to be as detailed as you can. Some of this will be determined by when you get paid and/or how much you already have set aside to spend. Try not to go into debt to buy for Christmas.
TIP 2: Go to the WEEKLY SCHEDULE AND PLANNING page for this week. Fill in the dates and begin filling in the goals for what you can buy this week. Some or all of that will come from TIP 1 above. When you have done that, go to next weeks page, fill in the dates and goals for making purchases for that week. Continue this process until you run out of weeks leading up to Christmas. You have just set up a plan to purchase gifts for family and friends for this Christmas.
TIP 3: If needed, use the PLANNER AND JOURNAL daily pages during the next few weeks that you can set aside to do the actual shopping. Some or most of your shopping can be done online but it’s still good to set aside specific times on specific days to do your shopping.
Stick to the plan you’ve laid out above and you’ll find that the shopping experience will go a little more smoothly than in years past. You should also be able to stick to your financial goals because you’ve written them out in black & white in your own journal. Just that one thing produces a little accountability that you would not have had otherwise when you go shopping with no real plan in mind.
Merry Christmas and happy shopping.