GREENSBORO, N.C. -- You have 75 days until Christmas; that's just 10 weeks!
It may sound like forever, but if you're trying to stick to a budget, the time to prepare is now.
WFMY News 2's money expert Ja'Net Adams is helping you get ready.
"Christmas is basically here. Once October 1st hit you could already hear jingle bells playing. This time of the year is when the most money leaves bank accounts around the country. Hopefully this year these tips that I am about to share will help minimize the money lost," said Adams, who wrote the book Debt Sucks, Everyone's Guide To Winning With Money So They Can Live Their Dreams."
Adams offered these three tips to better financial self control over the holidays:
1. Set A Limit
Think about those you in your household that you buy gifts for each year. Maybe in the past it has been a free for all and you get all or at least most of the items on their list. This year think about setting a spending limit for each person. For example you set a $200 spending limit for your child, but they want a $300 PS4. The solution is to let that child know the limit and if they want a PS4 they will need to come up with $100 by December 24th! This will make the person think twice about money and how it does not magically appear in our wallets.
2. High emotions
As soon as October 1st hit even though it will be in the eighties this week people could already see themselves in cozy sweaters, drinking hot cocoa, and singing Silent Night. This time of the year really ramps up our emotions and our emotional spending. Over the next three months we will be in such a good mood because of the holidays that we will see a $20 scarf and buy it for a cousin we have not seen since 2015. You have to control the desire to spend based off of your emotions.
3. Think about experiences
Whether it is just you in your household or multiple people take the time to think about what you received for Christmas last year. After you think about it then ask yourself where it is now. More than likely you can't remember and you definitely have not used it as much as you thought you would. This is especially true of children. After this exercise think about how you would remember a vacation to a place you never been before and if it is worth it to use your money for that instead. Experiences always last longer than stuff!
"You and your money have the opportunity to do something different this year, but it is up to you to take control!"