Are you a Black Friday shopper?
Last year 225 million people went shopping the day after Thanksgiving. That’s one in three Americans. Some of them camped out overnight and missed Thanksgiving with their family in the name of a good deal.
Now, I love a bargain, but I must ask- Is our time worth Black Friday’s deals? Is there anything we can buy on Black Friday that we can’t buy, if we really need it, on another day? Is a deal really a deal when we put ourselves in the least enjoyable shopping environment there is?
Our time is precious. If we have an extra day to do with as we please, aren’t there far more pressing and enjoyable things we can do than shop? Would you rather have an extra day of vacation to do with as you like or a day spent circling the mall parking lot looking for a parking space? When we compare stressful shopping to all the other enjoyable things we could be doing with our time, it is hard to believe that a third of us voluntarily give our time to the madness of Black Friday shopping.
There are many great ways to spend a vacation day that doesn’t include shopping. One of the best things to reveal itself from my family’s commitment to having less stuff is that we don’t have to do what everyone else does. While our neighbors might be inclined to use Black Friday to score a lot of new things, we don’t have to do the same. We have a choice. And on Black Friday, you can also choose to do any one of these free and worthwhile activities.
5 Awesome Free Things To Do on Black Friday
1. Spend time with people you love. Instead of waiting in line with other shoppers, spend Black Friday with people you love and care about. Time with friends and family is so much more rewarding than electronics sales.
2. Take a no-spend day. Yes, put your wallet away. Raid your pantry or freezer instead of grocery shopping, and invite someone over instead of meeting in a coffee shop. Waiting one day to purchase something may make you realize you didn’t need it in the first place.
3. Use something you already own. Have a Twister tournament, play basketball with the hoop out front or watch all the Star Wars movies back to back. Instead of buying new entertainment, revisit what you may have forgotten.
4. Fix something that needs mending. That door with the loose hinge, the lamp that you have been meaning to rewire, and the button that has been waiting patiently to be sewn back on your coat. Repair something you’ve been putting off for a while, and it’s like you went shopping on Black Friday for free without all the lines and inconvenience.
5. Call a friend that lives far away. Be it a state or ocean away, call a friend that you have been meaning to catch up with. Skype makes it free, and setting a time in advance when you can both talk without interruption will make it even more enjoyable and special.
Resist those sale signs and the flyer-induced hysteria about limited quantities and do something awesome, free, and truly enjoyable this Black Friday. Even if that awesome and free thing is doing nothing more than lazing about in your pajamas all day.
If you have to go, at least take a shopping list with you and stick to it, so you don’t get caught up in all the hype!
Will you be shopping on Black Friday? Do you think the sales are worth all the lines and trouble?
|Rachel Jonat is a world medalist rower turned marketing professional turned SAHM/writer. At The Minimalist Mom, Rachel writes about living a rich life with less stuff. Currently living on a windswept island in the middle of the Irish Sea, Rachel owns two pairs of jeans, loves taking the bus and is attempting to become a tea drinker.|