How To Celebrate Black Friday Without Leaving Your House, Because Your PJs Are Definitely Calling To You
Since 1932, the day after Thanksgiving has been a nation-wide holiday of excess and consumerism and stampedes occurring at your local mall. For some, it's a tradition; for many, it's a nightmare. But no one can deny the power of a really, really, really good sale, so here's how to celebrate Black Friday at home. That's right — without leaving your house. It can be done, and I'm about to show you how.
Black Friday's origin story is a little hazy; according to some, it began in Philadelphia as a result of the really awesome sales that happened between Thanksgiving Day and the annual Army-Navy football game, while others peg it as a reference to the phrase "in the black" — that is, profits being up. These days, it's essentially a sanctioned day of mayhem and money. And like, let's be real — that can be fun.
This year in particular, though, it's important that we focus on spending funds wisely, intentionally, or maybe not at all. It's important that we focus on how money can help people other than ourselves, and it's important to learn the full impact of how we spend our money and where. It's important that we take a step back and investigate how we engage with this holiday.
And also, like, getting all your presents squared away in one afternoon for the holiday season is rad.
Here's how to get your Black Friday on from the comfort of your very own couch.
Do Your Research
As any seasoned consumer will tell you, research is key if you're planning on engaging in A Big Sale. What do you want? What do you need? Whose presents do you still need to purchase? What stores are having online components to their Black Friday mayhem? You gotta have a game plan, and home is a good place to make that happen. What's more, you can even execute that game plan from home if you partake in Cyber Monday instead. (See point #3 below.)
Support Local and Family-Owned Businesses
Local businesses are the backbone of an economically healthy community. They provide employment, maintain community character, encourage sustainability, keep dollar bills circulating in the local economy, and offer product diversity. Stay home on Friday and instead, celebrate these businesses' radness on Nov. 26 with #ShopSmall Saturday, when small businesses across the country will be hosting their own versions of Black Friday.
Learn the Beauty of Cyber Monday
Cyber Monday is Black Friday for online shopping. Yes. Go. Investigate. Put your sweatpants back on and buy stuff from your couch.
Watch Your Favorite Shopping-Related Movie
Clueless, duh. Or honestly anything from the late '90s and early aughts when the economy was, like, fine and malls were All The Rage and teens were truly worshipped.
There are a ton of organizations that now, more than ever, need your support. And by support, I'm talking money. Consider spending the money you would have spent on, say, a new face mask as a donation. Not sure where to start? Here is a good list. And here is another. And there are plenty more where those came from.
Soup kitchens, homeless shelters, literacy organizations — they could all use your actual presence more than anything else. If you really don't want to leave your home, organize a food drive. Whose drop spot is your kitchen. Then go volunteer at the place you drop the fruits of your labor off at.
Organize a Clothing Swap
Start 2017 with a de-cluttered closet, a few new duds, and maybe some wine time with your friends. Donate any leftovers to Goodwill — if you've got a huge stash, some Goodwills are able to schedule a pick up. Find your nearest Goodwill here.
2016 has been a hell of a trash fire. Instead of engaging in retail therapy (which, for some, does wonders and I'm not at all discouraging it), some of you might find it more helpful to just completely detox from... all of it. Turn off your phone. Turn off your TV. Turn off your laptop. Take a walk. Breathe deep. Read a book. Write your loved ones letters. Stretch. Sing. Dance. Pet a dog. Pet a cat. Remember that you're not alone, ever, in anything.