Why You Can Forget The Budget This Thanksgiving

Your Life
thanksgiving photo

If you have a budget we’re giving you the green light to rip it up this Thanksgiving and if you don’t have a one here’s the green light to wait until after Thanksgiving to start. Here at Lifewise we talk a lot about budgets and the importance of saving money, but what we believe is even more important than budgeting is to align your money with what you value. That is why this Thanksgiving we’re giving you the green light to shred the budget and to go all out with one small caveat… only on things that will enhance your life.

Everyone is guilty of overspending, likely on things that aren’t of value. Tyler Durden in the infamous movie Fight Club, said “we [often] spend money we don’t have, on stuff we don’t need, to impress people we don’t like” which is a somewhat depressing statement, but in reality it’s probably not all that far off the mark. Think about all the stuff you’ve spent money on over the last year, necessities aside. How much of it truly enhanced your life and how much of it turned out to be just useless clutter? That fourth blue checkered shirt and the third pair of black shoes, really? Was upgrading to the latest iPhone really life changing?

The point of opening up the budget this Thanksgiving is not to splurge on useless consumer items, but rather to enhance the things that are really important to us. Think for a moment about what is really important, the exercise is a timely one given that Thanksgiving, for many, serves as a time of reflection and a constant reminder of how incredibly fortunate many of us are. As you begin to give thought to what it is that you are truly thankful for, keep in mind that it is these very things that are what we value! In fact, it’s probably safe to say that not very many people are dropping “my new 60-inch LCD TV with Dolby Surround Sound” or their $7.00 “Venti, Half Sweet, Caramel Macchiato,” from Starbucks when listing off things they are thankful for.

This Thanksgiving throw away the budget and just spend, not irresponsibly, but in a way that will enrich the time you have with friends and family. If you have an opportunity to spend the extra $100 on a flight that will get you home the Wednesday morning before Thanksgiving and not the morning of? Do it! Don’t even think twice about it, just do it. Debating whether or not to get the cheaper frozen turkey or the fresh one that’s more expensive? If you can truly afford it, do it!

Thanksgiving is a time to travel, to eat well, to spend time with old friends you haven’t seen in months, if not years, and most importantly to enjoy time with family, so don’t tighten the budget now.

About Matt Cosgriff, CFP(®)

Minneapolis Financial Planner | Intrapreneur | Young Professional | Millennial Guru | Tech Aficionado | Traveler | Food Lover | Minnesota Wild Fan | Movie Quoter | Follow on Twitter| LinkedIn

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