list of ways to curb spending through the holidays

A few years ago, I had noticed a trend. Liberally spending money begins in October, picks up in November, and is full-blown by December. I have several theories on why this happens: a bombardment of advertising to get me to spend, more activities and holidays to enjoy, and (lots of) gifts (for everyone) are a necessary part of the holidays, right?! Then January happens. It is winter. I can’t get outside to let loose some energy. In the past, I would just resume my shopping habit that I had been building for the past few months. Once January arrived, there was no more holiday money left and I was still in spending mode. It got hard to slow down, and that is where I usually ended up overextending myself financially. Honestly, I have really learned to budget for the holidays and can usually pay for them with money I have been saving. Here are some ways I’ve learned to slow my spending habits sooner.

list of ways to curb spending through the holidays |

  • I put money into “Funds” every pay period to pay for larger expenses: holidays, gifts, clothing, home, etc. This gives me some guidance as to how much I can spend.
  • I make a careful recording of how much I am spending from each Fund so I know exactly how much I have.
  • The only “credit card” I use is my Visa check card. This way I am no longer tempted to overspend. If I don’t have the money in a Fund, then I will not be buying it (at least not until I’ve saved for it).
  • I make a shopping list and try to stick to it.
  • I limit my trips to the grocery store to once a week. I try to avoid “shopping” anywhere unless I really have something I need. Studies show that EACH time one steps into a store of any kind, an average of $10 is spent on impulse items that had not been planned.
  • I try not to guess. I do a lot of planning: gifts, meals, trips to town. I consolidate and plan ahead when possible.
  • I don’t know what it is in this country that makes everyone want what everyone else has. It is sad to me how it affects us all. Though it is human nature to want to live comfortably, it is quite another thing to succumb to the internal pressure to get more and more and more.
  • I am daily trying to adopt these principles: Be satisfied, Do without, Make do, Wear it out!

How about you? Are you ready financially for the holiday season? If not, what will you try to do differently next year?


5 responses to “list of ways to curb spending through the holidays”

  1. Brethart77 says:

    Already starting to think of ways to curb my spending through the Holidays…

    1) Quit my job and move to Iran (They don’t celebrate Christmas there very often).
    2) Join the Jehovas Witness, I’m pretty sure they don’t celebrate Christmas.
    3) Run up your credit cards and lines of credit just before the Holidays so that you don’t have much to spend anyway.

  2. ccswch says:

    Great tips, thank you for sharing!

  3. Wendy says:

    I make over 75% of my gifts and make list for everything. And I mean everything. I thought I was the only person obsessed with lists.

    Love your Site.

  4. Vajana says:

    great website! Just what I need…affirmation that all my list-making is not total neuroses.

    We are not buying for adults this year, the whole family agreed ‘just for kids’, but of course we will be making home-made calendars for all the grandparents.

    I agree…it is hard to NOT keep up with the Joneses.

  5. FireMom says:

    We just finished the boys’ Christmas presents today (minus stocking stuffers which won’t run us more than $10). We have planned out what all family and friends are receiving. They will be purchased with my mid-month paycheck this month as will the boys’ stocking presents. I don’t shop in December.



So you can get your list on.

Reset Password

Register Today

Sign up for a free account to give ListPlanit a try.

Or click here to sign up for unlimited access to all of our lists for just $5 / month.


No problemo.

Enter your email and we'll send along password reset instructions.