How Do You Avoid the Trap of Black Friday and Cyber Monday?
I received a lovely email from a reader, Kim, this weekend, asking me, “As a maximalist trying to pursue more minimalist practices with regard to shopping and excess, what are your practices to avoid the traps or temptations of Black Friday shopping, either in person or online?”
This is a question I’ve been thinking about a lot lately–in fact, the entire fall. I’ve been trying to be more organized in all aspects of life, but especially the holidays. It’s so easy to get off-track and either buy far, far too much, or inadvertently forget someone! I’m really committed to making this holiday a really special one, especially for my toddler, as this will likely be the first Christmas he’ll really remember. I have such fond memories of Christmases with my extended family, whether my mother’s mother, or my father’s family–I want these to be just as special for my child!
For me, avoiding the traps of too much shopping has been a multi-pronged approach.
One, I made a list of everyone’s Christmas presents and everything I/my toddler will need for the fall and winter about a month ago and I’ve been slowly crossing things off. I think “Black Friday” has somewhat extended to most of November (as noted by my friend, Nan Philip, recently!), which has definitely been tempting! However, it has also made things a bit easier as I don’t feel this huge compulsion to save up all my purchases for next Friday.
Two, I unsaved my credit card information from Firefox, and put my wallet in my purse instead of on my nightstand. This has been a HUGE help in avoiding impulse shopping, because I actually have to get up and get my credit card, so I’ve been avoiding a LOT of impulse purchases that way!
Three, I have been trying to stay true to the mission of my blog and go through the many clothes/things I do have! Of course there are still things I need that do need to be replaced yearly–cotton turtlenecks, for one. But really, my actual needs are very minimal, so I’m really lucky. I’ve also been dressing up a little more at home, which is nice, and it feels really fun to wear clothes that were once everyday wear but haven’t been during the pandemic!
Four, in regards to gifts, I am trying (and always do try!) to find meaningful gifts for the recipient, no matter the size. For me, it’s far nicer to give (and receive!) one item that’s been truly picked out for me instead of many smaller ones that aren’t quite what I want or need. In case you missed them, I did publish a series of gift guides–you can find the overview and links to all five here–of what I hope you will agree are unique and interesting gifts. No sponsored posts or affiliate links are included, just gifts that either I have given or received, or plan to give/hope to receive myself this year!
A more recent thing that has helped me was last week’s episode of 60 Minutes, where they did a segment on the frankly insane situation at the shipping ports and explained how everything is so backed up. I would really love to avoid contributing to that, which I hope I am, as I’m really trying to buy things from only small businesses and not, say, the largest corporation in the world. (That being said, I do still use that corporation, especially for household supplies, but I’m trying not to as much!)
She–and I–would love to hear how you are avoiding the traps and temptations of Black Friday and Cyber Monday! Please do share below!
(The photo for this post is a VERY old photo I took of Cartier’s–I’m not a fan of the new bow on the store!)