Good Morning, Happy Thursday & Thanks to all the Veterans and those who’re serving and their families today!
Even with only an antennea to bring TV into the house, I’ve noticed that the Christmas ads are starting to pop up quickly. The Retailers are hitting those emotional buttons and we’re probably starting to feel excited and nostalgic about the holidays to come… This reminds me so much of a story of a Toilet Seat, told by Russ Carroll, the man who was with Dave Ramsey from the beginning. I heard this first hand while attending Counselor Training at Dave’s home offices in Nashville, TN.
Anyway, the Toilet Seat Story goes something like this: At Russ’ house (which I’m positive is VERY nice) they needed to replace a broken seat on the throne in a guest bathroom. He checked around the local ads and knew that Home Depot usually had revolving sales on things. He wanted to save money. Yes, many rich people are rich because they know how to do this! Read The Millionaire Next Door by Tom Stanley. When he went to Home Depot and asked the clerk if toilet seats ever go on sale. The clerk replies, “Nope. A toilet seat is a Need. We don’t advertise and discount Needs.”
Wow. Come to think about it, do we Ever see something that is truly a Neeeed shown on one of these fancy holiday only ads. How about the Target or Wal-Mart Black Friday Flyers? Do we sometimes see those ads and convince ourselves that a Want has now become a Need? This is exactly the intention of those retailers, and they are absolutley Awesome at transforming our emotions! If we Needed it, they wouldn’t be advertising it and it wouldn’t go on sale because those items are carried in every store and the price is already competitive, like when you buy a toilet seat.
Okay, so Christmas should be fun and meaningful and we should buy some Wants and put smiles on little kids’ faces and enjoy seeing them play and be happy. If you really want to create blessings with your gifts, they cannot be burdens to your financial status. Paying all year for last year’s gifts with credit card bills just plain takes the fun out of Christmas. Families who practice “buy now, pay later” for gifts have very little chance of having extra income to save and invest for emergencies and their future.
Here’s some bullet points to incorporate in your holiday shopping.
- Decide AHEAD of time how much money you Have available to spend for gifts.
- Decide the max price you have for each person/gift you are going to buy.
- Then decide on the gift type.
- Do LOTS of online shopping and ad scouring for the lowest price on the item you already decided you wanted to buy.
- Don’t let the ad tell you what you want to buy.
- Use CASH
Then, Enjoy Christmas to the fullest knowing that it is all paid for and you don’t need to have the New Year’s Resolution to “Get my credit cards paid off ASAP”!!
Thanks for reading this post. I appreciate every person out there and love sharing these thoughts with you. Remember, these ideas are coming from a Debt Free Dude, so I also live what I’m writing. Thanks!
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