Black Friday shopping is undeniably the biggest sale of the year. One of the google studies revealed that searches for “Black Friday” went up more than 200% this year. Its no secret that shopping is very high during holiday season and retail therapy is over-used.
A widely held belief is that shopping can make you feel better and we all resort to it from time to time. For some it seems like a stress buster and a reason to justify shopping and for other group, it seems controversial and would rather choose to do other kind of activities like exercising and reading as their therapy and suggest the same to their friends and family.
Its no surprise that shopping is in fact a therapy and the term Retail therapy exists for this very reason. The problem, however, is not the shopping but the mindless shopping of unnecessary items followed by huge regrets.
If shopping is done mindfully without giving in to the impulses and regretting the decision at later point, then holiday shopping is the most enjoyable experience ever. It might be one of the good things we can gift to ourselves this year given the brutal pandemic situation.
I was a victim of mindless shopping too and it took me years to master the art of mindful shopping not just for sale season but shopping in general. I ask myself these questions before I shop.
1. How often will I be reaching for this item? Will I use it 2 weeks from now, a month from now?
2. Do I need this? Do I own something similar? Does it make my life any better?
3. Will I buy it if its full price? Do I have a budget to pay it full price?
4. Where will I put it?
Answering to these questions make shopping a bit easier and this exercise when practiced often will curb the impulse shopping.
A little bit of planning and being mindful while shopping will help make the best of holiday sales. Here are 3 things I personally do before I shop on Black Friday sales:
List down the items that you absolutely need
Writing down helps to clear your mind and also helps with determining if this is something you need or you want it just because you saw it on Instagram or on sale.
Take a walk into your closet with your list and see if you find something thats already in your list and take that item from your list. Research the full price of the items in the list and See if this is something you will be willing to pay full price, if not, then that item doesn’t make sense to be on this list. After all this, you will be surprised how much your list will get shrunken.
Check out more about sustainable shopping on these posts:
Slow fashion practices: Tips that take minimal effort with maximum benefits
Sustainable fashion for beginners
Add Items to your shopping cart before the sale
Unlike usual Black Friday shopping where you will have to stay in line for door-busters, It’ll be mostly online this year. This gives you an opportunity to plan the shopping better and add the items you absolutely need to your cart beforehand.
Do all the prep work before the sale starts so this way, you dont get caught by “too good a sale to miss” items. This will not only help with hoarding unnecessary items, will save you more money in the long term.
Consider Shopping from small and local businesses
Shopping small is an amazing way to encourage new ideas and giving back to the community. Studies have shown that small businesses contribute to 2 out of 3 new jobs here in the United States. By choosing to spend money on small businesses, you’re simultaneously contributing to, and benefitting from it.
The small business owner will likely go that extra mile to make you happy which you wont get to experience from big retailers. This also helps building a sustainable environment for both businesses and consumers. There are more benefits for shopping small, I will have a dedicated post on why shopping small is important for consumers and economy.
Paying attention to what you are buying and a little bit of planning will do more good in the long term and will avoid unnecessary stress. Brands and retailers are always going to promote heavily to lure you into buying things you dont need. Look beyond the sales and make wise decisions.
Some more tips on making the best out of Black Friday sales:
- Restock on items that you technically use in your daily routine.
- Look for deals on large items like furniture, TV or electronics that you’ve been eyeing for some time.
- Invest in experiences like spa or tickets which you can use after the Pandemic.
- Research and invest in classic and timeless pieces like cashmere sweater, winter boots or classic jewelry.
I wish you a very happy and mindful shopping experience!!
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