I might be preaching to the choir. Most folks I know who enjoy or aspire to simple living view Black Friday as a non-event or as something to avoid. Others may find the challenge intriguing.
People who are the most successful during Black Friday sales are the ones with laser-like focus. For example, they need or want a flat screen TV, they see a store that will have one on deep discount that day, they formulate a plan to go there and get that one, single, solitary item. One, single, solitary item is the key. Retailers use extra-low pricing on certain items to get people into the store. These items are known as loss-leaders, and stores use the technique all year long. It is just really in your face at the holidays.
The number of items at deep discount is often limited, which is what leads to the annual television interviews with people camping out the night before in order to be first in line. It is also what leads to people behaving badly – pushing, shoving, and trampling anyone in their way. It’s horrifying, really.
Black Friday is further problematic because it preys on greed. Just like it is difficult for people to go into a casino and only spend $20, it is difficult to go to a store, get ONE item and leave. (Shopping at Target is all the evidence needed on this point. Or is that just me?) The urge to poke around and see what other deals might be lurking is too much temptation for some people.
The best approach is total avoidance, unless you are truly a Discount Shopping Ninja. If you can hit the store for the single sale item you went for and get out unscathed, then have at it, my friend. I bow down to your greatness!
As you simplify your life and your finances, finding deals like those offered at the holidays will become less important. Why? Because you realize you don’t really need those things at all.
How about you? Do you participate in the consumer-fest known as Black Friday? Share your thoughts below.