My 5 Rules of Holiday Shopping.

My 3 Rules of Holiday Shopping.

My 5 Rules of Holiday Shopping.

Each year I make it a goal to be done by my holiday shopping before the end of November – it’s really helpful for taking some of the stress out of the holiday season and gives you some time back to enjoy all of the festivities and holiday happenings throughout December. I spent some time last week on my vacation making that happen and I’m already feeling relieved to be done (although I’m dreading wrapping, it’s not my thing!). Over the years I’ve created a little system to help make shopping as efficient as possible and wanted to share my 3 key rules of holiday shopping with you in case they’re helpful while you make your list and check it twice:

  1. Start early: As mentioned, I’m all about starting early and planning ahead when it comes to the holidays. While I can’t necessarily shop throughout the year due to living in a small space, I’ll keep a running list of gift ideas in the Notes app on my phone, where I can jot down anything that comes to mind or snap a quick photo of something I see while out and about. Once November rolls around I officially begin thinking Christmas and start finalizing my plan so I can do all of my shopping online and take advantage of sales and free shipping to make everything easy.
  2. Get organized & set a budget: I like to create a Google Doc each year with everyone’s name that I need to shop for, and what I’ve budgeted to spend on each person. As I get ready to shop, I use the Doc to keep track of gift ideas with links and prices for each item so I can have everything organized before I make any purchases. This makes it easy to see at a glance who I have left to shop for and how much money I’ve spent to avoid going over budget or forgetting anyone on my list.
  3. Avoid impulse sale buys: Like most people, I love a good sale but have also found them to be a trap for buying things you don’t need or overspending on your holiday shopping just because something’s a “good deal”. Keeping track of what I’m planning to buy ahead of time makes it easy for me to click over to each retailer’s website to check and see if that item (or anything similar) is on sale and be really intentional with my sale buys versus the endless browsing of sale items that’s likely to lead to over-shopping, or shopping for myself 😉

My 5 Rules of Holiday Shopping. My 5 Rules of Holiday Shopping.

And in case you’re looking to shop of the sales happening right now, here are a few of the best I’ve seen:

Have you started your holiday shopping yet?