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Be Generous To Others, Frugal On Yourself

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Jerry's Weekly Newsletter

December 5 · Issue #32 · View online

I'm Jerry, a software engineer, YouTuber, and blogger. Every weekend I write about some thoughts, life lessons, and interesting things I came by for the week. I'd love for you to join.


Beware the Christmas Trap
Have you been hearing tons of Christmas music lately? I wouldn’t be surprised if you started hearing it starting before Halloween. If you go into shopping malls, you’ll hear it.
There’s actually data-driven evidence that hearing Christmas music in stores will lead to higher sales. You’ll either stay in the store longer or be happier, both of which increase your chance of spending more.
Yes, I’ve succumbed to this too. A few weeks ago, when I went into the mall that was playing Christmas music, I ended up buying a lot. And this was before Thanksgiving!
Of course, this doesn’t mean we stop going to stores. After all, we still need to buy things. Just try to behave as if the stores weren’t playing Christmas music.
Tis the season to be spend-y
Sorta.
The holiday season is indeed meant to be a festive time of great joy and happiness.
You should absolutely prepare gifts for your friends and family. I would encourage abundant generosity toward others!
You should absolutely treat yourself to some nice stuff if the occasion is right.
When you’re forced to choose between the two, I recommend prioritizing generosity toward others over yourself.
But frugality still applies
But keep it reasonable and don’t blow the bank or go beyond your limits.
Don’t throw all personal finance principles out the window for the month of December. It would be sad if you were going steady for the entire year, only to blow it all in December. Then you’d be back at square one.
Worse yet, if you go into bad debt, you’re doing yourself a huge disservice. Once the festive December passes, you’ll be greeted with a terrible sobering new year.
Remember, generosity is not just about the amount of money we spend on our gifts. The thoughtfulness of the gift choice also counts!
Furthermore, time is another great way to be generous too. Spending quality time with others or lending them a helping hand can go a long way!
Takeaway
  1. Be aware of the Christmas music gimmick. Retailers want you to spend more! Counter this by behaving as if there were no Christmas music.
  2. Be generous to others first before yourself. Frugality still applies!
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