STAYING DEBT- FREE during CHRISTMAS TIME

Is this the impossible task or a mindset?

My legs were begging me “come on, let’s move”and my head told me “I need to think about something”. Therefore, I went for a run!

It was pouring down with rain, but the small gesture of tying my shoelaces only reconfirms the old saying:  Mind over Matter;  if we really want to do something we will do it -regardless of the circumstance(s)..

Yesterday was Black Friday, the day after American Thanksgiving. Two days ago my new neighbours across the border praised the Lord; Americans were thankful for what they have and were counting their blessings.

Yesterday, Canadians and Americans alike were counting their blessings for the opportunity to purchase consumer items tax free.Yesterday, we were grateful for the invention of credit cards and we praised our banks for their willingness to lend us money.

It is a crazy world we live in: We purchase in the name of ‘keeping up appearances’, in order to keep our children happy, to look good in front of our neighbours… or for whatever reason we decide to open our wallets for.

The real Christmas frenzy hasn’t started yet, but Black Friday is a good indicator of what to expect. Tempted by too many Special Deals and Big Savings for items we don’t really need we spend and spend. The sad, but true fact about money is, you can only spend it once! Therefore we should ‘hand it over’  wisely. Apparently not so. It is much easier to spend invisible money  (i.e. put it on credit) than real bills and coins because we can’t see and feel them.i.e. it is so easy to lose track of expenditures!

As a citizen of the modern world I own both, a credit- and a charge card. And truth to be told, I love them both! But, before I put them to good use I always think of my father. His philosophy on credit cards is:”Only charge what you can afford to pay back straight away. If you can’t buy it now, save up for it!”

I like this particular pearl of wisdom from him and live accordingly. The banks don’t like me much, but my frugal spending habits have served me and our family well so far.

BUY within your budget. Honestly, how hard is that? Such a simple formula, but so hard to live with!?

Everyday we are listening to radio and TV reports of how much the average US and Canadian citizen spend during the most wondewrful time of the year! There is more spending frenzy between now and Dec. 31 than at any other time of the year and the individual debt is pilling up.

Dominic came home the other day and gave me a big, fat kiss! The kiss was one of relief and happiness. He just listened to another disturbing report on the radio about the hardships individuals are facing when they can’t pay off their Christmas debts by next March or April.”I am so happy you don’t behave like the rest of this continent”, refering to my conservative, old-fashioned budgeting.

I liked this spontanuous and small gesture from my husband. And yes, during Black Friday I joined the madness. But, I knew my limit and stayed within it.

Ïf running in the pouring rain is a mindset, so should be  debt-free shopping. Both take discipline and a certain mindset – and this in today’s world seems extra-ordinary. Don’t you agree?

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