The holidays are over and the memories are made, but you may be feeling frustrated as you manage money stress from holiday bills. The average American spent $986 last year alone as they decked their halls last holiday season. No matter what your holiday spending was, you may be feeling a little frazzled when you think about your bills.
The Best Way To Manage Money Stress From Holiday Bills
Your mental attitude makes a big difference in how you attack your debt. Though it may feel like you are swimming, remember that you do have the power to make a difference in your finances. Also, keep in focus the memories you created over the holiday season are the reason why you may be now shifting your finances around, and those moments are important. Find ways to de-stress such as exercise or taking quiet time to yourself. Focus on smaller daily or weekly goals if you are becoming overwhelmed, and you can drastically lower your money stress from holiday bills.
Budget With Envelopes
This is a word I love to hate thinking about, but a budget saves my skin when I have over spent. If you did not budget before the holidays, you need to now more than ever. If you find budgeting tricky, I highly recommend using a cash envelope system as a quick way to jumpstart your budget. My husband and I have used this system when we were at our tightest financially, and it makes it very easy to keep any extra spending in check. A cash envelope system is a perfect way to limit yourself to just the essential spending and keep you in control, and less stressed.
Pay Off Store Credit Cards First If You Can
According to Forbes Magazine if you put $1000 of holiday gifts on store credit cards and pay only the minimum payment you could end up paying double for the items you bought. Most store credit cards though they offer great sales promotions have very high interest rates. If you put the same $1000 bill on a regular bank credit card and only paid the minimum, likely you will pay around $350 in interest. If you racked up multiple kinds of debt this season, attack these store credit cards first and your finances will be better in the long run.
Enjoy Cooking At Home
One of the easiest places to temporarily shave money out of your monthly budget is in your grocery and eating out budget, and the extra money you save can go straight into those holiday bills. Try making homemade soups or crockpot meals that tend to be a low cost per meal, and also freeze well in individual portions for quick lunches. You can also check out our Cheap Healthy Meals For Large Families for more ideas.
Use The Entertainment You Have
After the holidays have ended, you may find yourself saying feeling a bit blue. Now is the time to look for cheap entertainment and to use those great gifts from the holidays. Explore all those great shows on Netflix , for very little cash, and spend time with those new holiday gifts. Look for free events in town near you, or simply implement family game night. Check out the library as a wealth of entertainment. After the holidays is a great time to shave your entertainment budget.
All of these ideas will help you to take control of any holiday debt you may have. When we feel in control, our overall stress level can lower and we can make more levelheaded decisions. Now if I could have just told myself that when I was the crazy lady in the store with a holiday ham clutched in my hand!
How do you manage money stress from holiday bills? Tell me in the comments!
Image Credit: Rocky Lubbers
22 thoughts on “The Best Way To Manage Money Stress From Holiday Bills”
You have some really good tips. Mental attitude is everything. When I was in my 20s I enjoyed reading books on how to be in charge of my finances and how to save money. I think it helped me to develop the right money attitude, which definitely pays now.
I usually spend much of my January at home for this reason! It’s just cheaper to eat and enjoy entertainment at home rather than spend all that money going out.
These are all great ideas and tips. We try to keep on top of the credit card bills, limit eating out, and cut back on overall spending. Next year we really need to be better about budgeting!
Great tips and thats at the top of my 2016 goals. 🙂
These are great tips! I’m so over money stress!
Fabulous tips, really! My husband and I are on a financial repair kick right now. LOL, that sounds bad. We’re not repairing as much as we want to pay the house off early 😉
Great tips on managing after the holidays. I know we had to budget a lot to get our holidays done.
I think the best way to relieve holiday stress is to be proactive! This year I started saving $50 per month in November so that by the time Black Friday rolls around I will have $650 which is more than enough!
Thanks for the tip! These are much needed!
These are wonderful tips and, luckily, something my husband and I do regularly anyway. We do find ourselves really focusing in on the “eating at home” and “enjoying entertainment you already have,” tips right after the holidays. It makes a big difference in a short amount of time.
These are great tips! We always have to slow down our spending after Christmas. We try to pay with everything with cash to keep our bills from piling up.
These are great tips. A friend of mine swears by the envelopes trick to keep her on track.
I avoided adding to my debt this holiday by making all of my gifts from supplies I already had on hand, but that hasn’t always been the case. The cash envelope system has never really worked for me (since most of my transactions are digital), but I definitely agree that keeping to a budget and writing every expense down is the best way to keep track of spending–I have a part of my planner dedicated to monthly budget worksheets and a spot on my weekly pages to write down what I’ve spent each week. It helps a lot.
We’re always looking for many ways to budget and save money. We cook at home a lot, like all the time and find that it helps. I’ll have to try the envelope tip next, although being a food blogger means that sometimes I have to spend extra money for the job. Thanks for the tips!
My hubby and I set a budget and stick to it. Then we aim to have all our shopping done early so we have everything paid off before the first gift is open. You have some great tips on how to manage the after Christmas debt!
I am up to my ears with debt from the Christmas season it is unreal. Thank for the tips it is important to manage well being to create a good state of mind!
I love the idea of a budget envelope! I’m definitely going to try this. I love home cooking too x
Honestly? I never let holiday spending get to the point of being stressful [anymore]. Lesson learned.
These tips are big help! Budgeting is the best way to manage finance before and after Christmas, and I think budget with envelopes will great idea.
This tips are awesome to manage the holiday gifts debt!
These are all such great tips! We take great care to not spend more than we have saved for Christmas, which makes things so much better.
I def needed to see this thanks so much I saved to really dig into this. Laci @ sequinsinthesouth.com