Christmas may be a time for family reunions and strengthening of emotional ties, but for many people it also means a significant economic drain.
The dinners and the great amount of commitments linked to consumption make the expenses soar during those days and arrive at the month of January with the bank account shaking .
Enduring the January slope
There are certain psychological keys to better cope with the month of January after getting used to the excesses of Christmas. This is a selection of the best.
1. Step away from the television
The most attractive and eye-catching advertising pieces are still on TV. They are relatively long advertisements, which cannot be “passed quickly” to access the content we want to see and which, moreover, enter us by sight and by ear.
That is why during the January slope it is preferable not to be tempted by these advertising spots and to switch either to the Internet or to paper readings , if you are looking for leisure without leaving home.
2. Write down an expense ceiling
Discipline is very important during the January hill, and that’s why it’s good to set a spending ceiling for this month.
To make this measure more complete. You can also convert this spending limit into two , one for each fortnight, or into four, to make it weekly. The closer in time these objectives are, the more effective their application will be.
3. Follow self-instruction when shopping
When you go shopping, make a list of what you want to get before you go out on the street (or browse an online store). That way you won’t be tempted to make impulse purchases.
4. Don’t go shopping hungry
Strangely enough, a curious psychological effect has been described that occurs when we go shopping while feeling hungry: we buy more. And no, we don’t just buy more food; we buy more of everything . You can read more about this finding in this article.
So, make sure you have a full stomach before you go to the shops. That way, your rational side will have more room for manoeuvre and will not be dominated by desires.
5. Analyze prices rationally
Whenever you are about to buy something unexpected or are hesitating between two brands of the same product, spend at least 20 seconds thinking about whether you are considering buying the more expensive one for a reasonable reason or whether you are being influenced by a marketing strategy that creates a need that you did not have before.
For example, a good first step is to be wary of packs or versions of a product that are more expensive but have an extra quantity that is free. Will it really help you to have that extra quantity? Are you really looking for a product like that, will you get all those qualities you pay for?
6. If you have children, act exemplary
To resist the January slope is also to manage the domestic economy.If your sons or daughters see you spending as usual or even more, they will learn that they can also continue to spend their savings as usual, regardless of external circumstances.
This is called vicarious learning, a concept developed by psychologist Albert Bandura. In this case, vicarious learning implies that young people have the feeling that it is not necessary to manage periods of scarcity , and will continue to spend the money they have been given or demand more.
That’s why it’s a good idea that the youngest people also participate in the management of the small economic crisis that is the January slope and learn to spend less at this time.