Just say no.
Okay, I know it’s not quite that easy. But I do believe that simple little word is your most powerful defense against overindulgence. Speaking the word no – out loud to others not just in your head – can help you avoid overeating and overspending during this holiday season.
That might mean telling Grandma you won’t be eating another piece of pumpkin pie or telling your co-workers you won’t be a part of the gift exchange this year. Trust me, Grandma will get over it, your office mates really don’t care, and your waistline and wallet will thank you.
Another little word that can do wonders for you is why. Stop and ask yourself why you want another bite, another drink, or feel you need to buy another gift. You may just realize you aren’t hungry, could use a glass of water instead, or could create a fun experience for a loved one versus buying more stuff.
Tips to Avoid Overspending on the Holidays
Use cash to stay on your budget if you need to. Pay off any credit card usage immediately. While it might be fun watching people open gifts, it isn’t fun still paying for those gifts for months or years to come.
- Set a budget and don’t forget it – know what you can spend and don’t exceed your limit
- Make a list and check it twice – do you really need to buy a gift for everyone in your office?
- Keep a running total of your spending and ensure you’re sticking to your plan – tracking every receipt will help you stay on budget
- Shop the sales and use coupons and discount cards whenever possible – plan ahead
- Cash in on award points for savings, redeem them for gift cards or enjoy the cash-back
- Earn some free money with these apps
- Give acts of kindness over things – coupons for massages, babysitting, house cleaning, etc.
- Donate time and money instead of exchanging gifts – we started doing this a few years ago
- Stay out of the mall – to save money, stop shopping
- Use price matching to get the best deal at your favorite stores or sites
- Avoid shipping costs by having items ordered online shipped to a local store if possible
- Host festive potlucks over fancy and elaborate dinners
Tips To Avoid Overeating During the Holiday Season
Make healthy choices when you can. Remember calories differ, so don’t waste calories eating items you don’t love. Celebrate only at holiday dinner parties or events, not every day after work. Plan your days and nights, including your occasional splurges. Stay mindful and enjoy your plan.
- Eat when you are hungry, stop when you are almost full. Avoid starving yourself early in the day to indulge later, it almost always backfires.
- Bring something healthy with you. Offer to bring a salad or vegetable tray to potlucks.
- Eat what will give you the most satisfaction. You don’t need to try everything, choose quality over quantity.
- Use a small plate and portion control. Pile on the healthy options first and then smaller portions of the special foods you love.
- Choose lots of vegetables, but not the ones covered in cheese or marshmallows.
- Eat slowly, savoring the taste of every bite. Pause between bites by setting your fork down or drinking a sip of water.
- Limit your drink calories. Cocktails, eggnog, lattes, etc. are full of calories. Stay mindful of what you are drinking, and try opting for less caloric alcoholic options or skinny drinks instead.
- Drink lots and lots of water
Tips to Stay Active Throughout the Holidays
Choose exercise activities you enjoy. Work out at times that work best for you and partake in events around your exercise routines. Use visual reminders to keep you on track, such as keeping your workout clothes and shoes where you will see them. Post notes on your bathroom mirror. Use motivating wallpapers on your phones and computers. Schedule activity on your calendar.
- Keep activity a priority and stick to your usual exercise routine, inviting visiting family or friends to join you outside or at the gym
- Move after eating – breakfast, lunch, and dinner
- Play with the kids
- Walk the dog extra laps; it will be good for both of you
- Engage in winter activities – ice skating, cross-country skiing, snowman creation, snowshoeing, a playful snowball fight
- Sign-up for a fitness event occurring early in the new year
- Challenge another; whoever is the most consistent with their exercise, or who keeps their weight in check wins
- Remember your why
Remember to ask yourself why. Say no when you need to. And enjoy this holiday season creating special memories, guilt-free.
Related Post – Taming The Holiday Stress Monster By Taking Care of You
Please share your tips with us. What helps you stick to your budget, your exercise routine, or your eating plan during the holidays? Comment below!