“The rich rule over the poor; and the borrower is slave to the lender.” Proverbs 22:7 CSB
Overspending at Christmas is something we all suffer from at some point or another. In order to help us not make the same mistake this year, we’re going to look towards the wisdom of Dave Ramsey, who has helped thousands of people find their way to financial peace. In his blog post, “20 Ways to Boost Your Holiday Budget,” he gives us helpful insight. In Dave’s words, “Live like no one else, so you can live like no one else.”
First off, use the four gift rules: “Something you want, something you need, something to wear, something to read.” Don’t buy things just so they have more to open under the tree. My mother had a saying about great sales, “It doesn’t matter if it’s a great price, if you don’t need it, it’s still wasted money.” Instead, my Mom bought gifts all year long, not just in December, another suggestion from Dave’s post. Dave also recommends getting a second job to pay for Christmas gifts, take paid time off from your regular job to work another job to buy presents. Shop sales, or make gifts for the people in your life, don’t pay full price for anything. Another great suggestion from the article is to stock up on gift cards throughout the year. Buy a $25 gift card each month, by December you have 12 gift cards to give away without hurting your budget. Drawing names in your family can cut down on holiday expenditures, as well as starting a Christmas account to put money aside each month for the holiday. Christmas comes every year, we shouldn’t be surprised by it’s arrival, but often times we are. These are just a few of the things mentioned in the article. Obviously, some of them we’re unable to do at this stage of the game, but we can keep them in mind for next year.
Dave did offer a bonus tip that we can all follow. Set a holiday spending goal. When we take a good look at our finances before hand, we can set realistic expectations of what we can spend. As the verse above says, “the borrower is slave to the lender” (Prov. 22:7 CSB). If we don’t learn to control our spending in December, we will be a slave to our creditors in January. We can find rest by not overspending. Ways I’ve implemented this in my own life including not buying gifts for friends. Instead, we go out to lunch and enjoy each other’s company. My husband and I choose not to buy gifts for each other, instead we take a trip each holiday. My family drew names in the past, now we just enjoy a meal together. The time we spend with people is more precious than spending it looking for the perfect gift.
Today I’m going to find rest by not overspending. How can you find rest today? Comment below.