A Blue Christmas: Controlling Financial Stress This Year

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Halloween is nearly over, which means it’s time to look to the next holiday. Low and behold it’s Christmas, the most expensive season of all the year. Xmas is a festive and loving period which involves eating lots and giving gifts. Sadly, nothing is free in this world, and you need cash to have a good time. It isn’t rare, then, for the Christmas blues to set in and ruin what should be a joyous occasion.

For the people who suffer from financial depression, below are the tips which can help you to keep it in check. Are you ready for a stress-free Xmas? Great! Let’s get started.

Set A Realistic Budget

The first step is to come up with a sensible financial plan. Too many families overspend at Christmas because of peer pressure and a desire to please. One of the great things about the festive period is the fact that it’s a happy time regardless. Yes, kids always want the latest technology or the coolest clothes so they can show off. But, even the little ones enjoy giving and receiving gifts whether it’s what they want or not. Let’s face it – there’s something about unwrapping paper which gets the blood pumping. Plus, Christmas is about more than splashing out on loved ones. At its core, the small things, such as sitting at a table having dinner, make the biggest difference. When you keep the spirit of Xmas in perspective, it helps to keep your budget in check, too.

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Get Help

Of course, you are going to have to spend some money because presents, food and wine aren’t cheap. Okay, so some things are less expensive than others, but they cost money nonetheless. If your budget is realistic yet very small, there are options. For example, credit companies do have fantastic offers during November and December. They know families need help and tweak their promotions accordingly. A piece of plastic may not appeal, which is why loans with no credit check are alternatives. The money is almost instantaneous and ready to spend in a matter of days. Finally, friends or family members may be able to help you financially. Should you need help, there is no lack of choices. But, only get help if you can’t afford the basics this yuletide. Otherwise, it may be the last Christmas your family has together.

Start Early

Once you have a budget and the money in your pocket, it’s time to start shopping. Yes, that means now! The end of October/beginning of November it may be, but it’s never too early. For one thing, the high street shops and supermarkets advertise Xmas gear as soon as Halloween is over. So, it isn’t as if there is a shortage of establishments to look for gifts. More importantly, it helps to avoid the mad rush on Christmas Eve. One of the main components of stress is unpredictability. When you don’t have any presents the day before the big day, you may have to suspend Christmas. For the average person, this can send them into a stressful tailspin which doesn’t go away. Starting early allows you take your time and keep the cortisol levels to a minimum.

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Save

Speaking of starting early, don’t assume the method only applies to shopping. By saving as soon as possible, there is no reason to worry about your finances. Yes, help is on hand, but adding to your debt only adds to stress levels. The trick is to begin planning financially for Xmas as soon as the current one ends. In January, when your first paycheck of the New Year arrives, put a little away. It doesn’t have to be a lot because the key is to save a small amount over an extended period. Plus, Christmas takes its toll financially what with all of the expenses. As your finances get brighter over the course of the year, you can save more or less depending on your circumstances. Just remember that a contingency plan is a savvy move at the most unpredictable time of the year.

Enjoy It

Sadly, there is always an element of stress at Christmas, especially if you’re hosting people. Still, letting the moment wash over you is a festive crime punishable by a lump of coal in your stocking. In the end, Christmas and New Year’s are times to be with family, eat good food, and laugh. So, take a moment to enjoy the experience, whether it’s the look on your child’s face or a present which takes your breath away.

Cortisol can kill Christmas, which is why you need to keep it in check.

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