With the festive season only weeks away, it’s timely and essential for all of us to plan how we’re going to manage the financial pressure during the Christmas and New Year holiday season.
Christmas is such a wonderful time of giving and receiving, however learning how to avoid a ‘Financial Hangover’ due to excessive giving and overindulgence is essential.
So, if you want to save your lifestyle and relationships from hitting rock bottom when that credit card statement arrives in the new year, keep reading.
Avoiding a Christmas Financial Hangover requires planning. I’m here to help you do that by sharing some of the ideas tips and mindset that I recommend, and my clients use.
A financial hangover is the when the realisation hits, that you have spent too much. Way too much and you did not realise it, nor were you expecting it.
Your stomach ties itself into a knot, a feeling of dread rolls over you; you may even break into a sweat and start to panic. It’s the post fallout of financial excess or gluttony beyond your means.
It can be disastrous for your health, relationships, business, career and your finances.
For some a ‘Financial Hangover’ can happen regularly throughout the year.
For these people, it’s like ground hog day. The ‘Financial Hangover’ happens repeatedly and they become a whinger that no-one wants to listen to anymore, or help.
This repeated behaviour can ruin your own self-esteem, your relationships, and trash your credit rating.
Don’t go there!
If you want to be financially sober and self-aware as you move into the Christmas Holiday season, you can.
Help is available.
Make a Pact To Act and turn your Money Stress ‘Financial Hangover’ into Money Success.
Decide NOW, to make this Christmas different.
To prepare, I invite you to begin with a focus on the post-Christmas feeling.
Take 5 mins of quiet time, alone, to complete this exercise…
Take a breath and as you exhale and relax, take a moment to imagine yourself after Christmas. It’s mid-January and you’re proudly looking back on the ‘Money Success’ planning you did, pre-Christmas.
Take another breath and enjoy the feeling of knowing that you enjoyed yourself without excess.
And again, breathing fully and knowing that you’re starting the new year with plenty of funds, because you didn’t spend excessively over the Christmas season. You planned, you were and still are, in control.
Make a promise to yourself now, that you will make a plan that you will follow. You will have money in your wallet all the time and you will not spend it all.
Breath and relax
Now, for the next exercise, allow yourself at least 10 mins to imagine the new year ahead, January through to December…
Draw a timeline with each month, then write in each month the goal of what you want to do and achieve, along with the costs associated for each goal.
Total up the cost of the goals and add them to your annual expenses.
Deduct your annual costs from your annual net income.
You now have a realistic snapshot for the coming year. This exercise will assist you in creating a realistic budget for this current Christmas holiday season.
"If you fail to plan, you plan to fail"
Because you’re planning your budget for the Christmas season, you’re planning to Succeed. This is the first step and one that many people don’t think to do.
You’ll be starting the new year enthusiastically; with good planning and follow through, you will have no regrets or “Financial Hangovers” to slow you down during the year.
Let’s get another snapshot at your finances…
Work out your cash flow and expenses between now and 1st January.
Work out how much you have spare each week and create a fun Christmas account or a cash savings jar for Christmas expenses.
If you have a ‘Financial Hangover’ history, then cash is often a better option than to use credit cards. Cash runs out, it’s real and reminds you of the promise you made to have Money in your wallet all the time and to not spend it all.
Some of my clients, are excited to socialise, but concerned that they’re heading for a ‘Financial Hangover’.
With so many Christmas catch ups and parties, late nights and overindulgence on rich food and alcohol; many end up feeling bloated, unable to think properly and you’re full of bad smelling expensive gas.
Having a budget and sticking to it can help avoid these negative effects of a “Financial Hangover”.
The second thing that you need to do, is work out what’s on your Christmas agenda.
There will be costs associated with your decisions, which you will need to budget for.
So, by taking the time to plan what you WANT, you can ensure that you do have enough funds to pay for everything WITHOUT having a “Financial Hangover.”
Socialising and preparing with the New Year in mind, is how my clients are undertaking their planning so that they avoid the Christmas “Financial Hangover.”
They’re already IMAGINING a bigger better more PROFITABLE year.
They’re CONSIDERING what else they want to achieve, do and be a part of during the coming year.
They’re EVALUATING, which means trimming unnecessary expenses and re-allocating funds to achieve their dreams.
They are PLANNING by taking deliberate action now.
Those DELIBERATE ACTIONS mean socialising with the important people in their life.
They are PRIORITISING the social connections that matter personally and professionally first. The relationships that fill their heart, want the best for them and can help progress their aspirations in some way.
They STOP with the “time wasting” connections; which can be costly and a distraction. They understand that “Time” is a resource, that they will never get back.
They Go where they’re wanted and appreciated.
I highly recommend that you….
Really think about what you want to do during the Christmas season. Here are some questions to think about…
This point is about creating a “Gift Budget” within your means. Not wasting your money or trying to impress or keep up with the Jones’s.
List all the important people first…
Discuss your plans with your partner and have an alliance for Money Success.
If you don’t have a partner, share your plans with someone who cares about you and maybe offer to support them too.
MAKE A PACT TO ACT – practice the art of having money success and I assure you; your life will start heading in the direction you desire.
Enjoy your Christmas holiday season knowing that you’ve planned to AVOID the Christmas “Financial Hangover”.
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Zoe Slater is a qualified Counsellor and a registered member with the ACA and QCA and is the CEO of Freedom Choice Academy. For nearly 20 years, Zoe have been working with professionals using her unique processes to transform their lives from stress to success. She is an experienced Facilitator and Master Coach and has been running personal development workshops and retreats since 1999. To learn more about her Transformation Coaching Programs CLICK HERE