Hope everyone is doing well and looking forward to the holiday season!
I recently wrote about my top 10 favorite fall traditions (which I had so much fun writing). In that post, I mentioned how much I enjoy Black Friday and how it has become a tradition that I really have learned to enjoy.
A lot of people will think I’m crazy for “enjoying” Black Friday. Most people will generally associate Black Friday with long lines, big crowds, mobs fighting over $2 toasters, stampedes, etc. I don’t blame them one bit for thinking that!Even though Black Friday can turn into extreme chaos, I’ve found ways to make it enjoyable and even fun!
Since Black Friday is less than a week away, I wanted to share 5 tips on how I have learned to enjoy Black Friday shopping. These are guidelines that have successfully turned the dreaded shopping day into one I look forward to every year!
Tip # 1
Make a ROUGH Game Plan
I do this every year. I will generally come up with a rough idea of where I want to go and what I want to buy. I emphasize ‘rough’ because nothing is predictable; lines are longer than expected, parking is hard to find, that toaster sold out in 5 seconds,etc. Having that flexibility will allow you to adapt to your scenario.
Here is typically how I create my game plan:
- Grab the Thanksgiving Day newspaper
- Skim the sales and circle things I want or might want
- Make a list of the items I want, in order of importance
- I then choose the order of stores I want to visit based off of which stores have the most sales I want to take advantage of, where they are located, and the times they open.
(I use to go to my key stores before they open but with most of them opening on Thanksgiving, I just show up when I want to)
Don’t plan on buying the things you need
Before I moved into my first apartment, I had decided to use Black Friday as a way to buy the things I needed for my new place. BIG MISTAKE! That was the first year I didn’t enjoy the Black Friday experience at all. I just remember being stressed and tired and ready to be done!
By making it about things I needed, it turned Black Friday into a chore. Chores alone aren’t very enjoyable, but adding mobs of people standing in 2 hour lines makes it even less enjoyable.
Of course if you see something you need on sale for 50%, by all means go buy it! But don’t make your trip about buying necessities. This is one of my biggest tips for keeping the Black Friday experience enjoyable.
Make it fun
Find ways that increase your enjoyment. Even if you have to stand in line. Here are my ways.
- I always buy my first holiday cup of coffee and bring it with me into the long lines. Generally a gingerbread or eggnog latte. It keeps me warm, but also gets me into the Christmas spirit (gives me something to do, too lol)!
- I always make sure to bring at least one friend. Black Friday shopping is not fun alone…just saying…
- Have an optimistic/happy mindset. The mind is truly a powerful thing. If you go in expecting to be miserable, you probably will be.
You are probably asking,”Molly, why would I stay out till 5am just to ‘browse’?”. Well, what I find most fun IS the browsing. Browsing takes all the stress and disappointment out of trying to find that particular item that is at a RIDICULOUS discount, only to find it is already sold out.
Browsing gives more power to decide when you are ready to hit the hay or move on to other stores. You aren’t tied down to finding that $50 4k Flat Screen TV.
Browsing sales instead of gunning for that one item can be FUN! It is almost like a treasure hunt. You never truly know what you are going to find!
Tip # 5
As I mentioned, flexibility and adaptability is important in enjoying Black Friday. But one of the important reasons why that is, is that it allows you to determine if that $2 toaster is worth the 5 mile line. It is definitely more rewarding when you reach the end of the line with an item that you truly wanted rather than an item that is only saving you a few dollars, and is probably horrible quality.
To sum it all up…
The biggest, most important point I’d like to make is just RELAX!
Nothing should be set in stone and everything should be adaptable. you don’t HAVE to buy anything or do anything you don’t truly want. If you get that “cringe-y” feeling in your gut when thinking of trying to shop a certain store or buy a certain thing, don’t worry about it! It will only make the experience stressful rather than enjoyable.
If you were planning on facing the crowds this Black Friday, I hope these tips help you to enjoy your time out! Here is a great post by the Krazy Coupon Lady, on 34 Brilliant Black Friday Hacks for 2016.
How do you make Black Friday more fun? Share in the comments. I would love to hear from you!
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