So This is How to Have a Debt Free Christmas- Part 5

This is Part 5 of an 8-part series guiding you on how to have a debt free Christmas. Click here to read parts  123 and 4. Each week we will introduce you to progressive steps you can take to create a holiday season that is meaningful, authentic, connecting AND debt free. Yep… it’s really possible.

For a more comprehensive look at the steps, sign up for our FREE 5-day email course, Take Back the Holidays – Guiding you to a Debt free Christmas by clicking here or filling out the form above. You’ll receive a daily email with access to the private FB group and some amazing bonus material to ensure you wake up on New Year’s Day without a penny of additional debt but a pile of gratitude, and deep, lasting calm.

DIFFICULT CONVERSATIONS ARE THE VERY ESSENCE OF LOVE, INTIMACY, AND GENEROSITY. -BRIAN @ MADE OF METAPHORS

We talk about money and hurt and fear and anger and sex and death and taxes. Also, we talk about mean kids at school and what it means to be a mean kid. And mean grownups. Oh, and the guy on the corner with the illegible cardboard sign and the sallow eyes and gaunt face. And don’t forget the talk about frustration and disappointment and injustice and advertising and desire and monsters who may or may not be upstairs, so I’ll just wait to brush my teeth until someone else can come up with me. Of course we talk about how our vision and values for our family is calling us to change the way we make choices with our money.

We talk about hard things at our house, and I suspect you do, too.

This week, it’s time to have what might feel like a hard conversation with your people.

Please, friend, don’t fall victim to the temptation to minimize your family’s conversations as “First World Problems.” Yes, your kids aren’t digging through the poisonous trash heap for shoes, or food, or selling their bodies for a bowl of broth. True, you’re not ducking bombs or seeking shelter in the shelter on this cold night. Yes… that’s all true, and the suffering in this world (and down the street) is real and relevant. AND, the hard things you talk about at home are also real and also relevant.

THE ART OF OUR MODERN LIVING IS LEARNING HOW TO HOLD ALL OF THAT WITHOUT PUNCHING YOURSELF IN THE FACE WITH ABUSIVE SHAME.

This awful and culturally accepted self-talk only leaves us paralyzed and bruised. Then we’re no closer to our visions or goals, and absolutely no closer to the promise of who we can be.

Let’s make a promise to each other not to do it any more, deal?

Instead, acknowledge the discomfort, even anxiety that might be present for you when you think of having a conversation with your family about how your vision for a New Holiday season will mean changing the patterns and expectations of the past. Acknowledge it, and then go have a hard conversation.

ACTION STEP \\

Text, call or email your spouse right now and set aside some time this evening to talk about this amazing money plan you’ve come up with.

Really, right now.

You’ve worked hard on this. If you haven’t already brought your partner into the loop, it’s time. Make it a date on the couch, after the kids are in bed. Like a budget meeting but with eggnog and mistletoe (Don’t forget the mistletoe!).

Share your work – your vision, your budget, your initial stab at your spending patterns and your incredible solutions to fund a debt free Christmas. Then, pass the mic and listen to your spouse. Just listen. Be open and generous with your heart and mind and you might be surprised and inspired by what you hear.

Or, you might not.

You might feel disappointed and frustrated. Holidays are an easier entry point to have The Money Conversation with a reluctant spouse than other points. (the mistletoe usually softens the edges – don’t forget the mistletoe  But it’s not a guarantee. What is certain, though, is your amazing spirit and desire to create something new and meaningful this year. It can be lonesome at times to do things differently.

Nevertheless, don’t forget to breathe. You’re not alone – I’m rooting for you and there are people around the corner, and around the world, who are doing this important, life-giving work alongside you.

Stay tuned, we’ll be back on Friday with the next step – sharing your vision and plan with your kids. Like I said, don’t forget to breathe.

Always, always rooting for you.

 
DebtOlivia Zurawski