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Holiday Management Tips or Unapologetic Consumerism? [Opinion]

Chris Franz, Getty Images News

Over the last few weeks I’ve written a number of blogs about shopping tips and money saving strategies. Obviously during the holiday season we’re going to shop. But I think there’s a difference between shopping like almost everyone else, and stopping your life to go spend money.

It’s no secret that the economy isn’t great right now. The unemployment rate is scary. Companies are cutting benefits, and it’s trickier than ever for most of us to make ends meet. That being said, shopping during the holidays is something that can help us feel a sense of normalcy. As long as we don’t overstretch ourselves there’s nothing wrong with a little “retail therapy”.

As you poke around the Internet this time of year there’s no shortage of stories about shopping tips and tricks and how to get the most for your dollar. But yesterday I came across one that shocked me. Mixed in with the usual tips like “look for shipping deals” and “do an inventory of what you’ve already purchased and how much you’ve spent…” there was this brilliant nugget of advice:

Consider taking a day off from work. . .That way you’ll miss any before-work shopping crowds

Wait, what? Is this author really suggesting that in today’s economy we should actually take a day off of work so it’s easier to spend even more money??

As I said earlier, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with spending money and buying gifts for those who are important to us this time of year, as long as we spend within our means. But for those of us who are lucky to have jobs in this tough economy, I just couldn’t believe that a financial journalist was suggesting that shopping is more important than going to work.

What do you think, am I over reacting and reading too far into this? Feel free to leave a comment below!

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