The holiday season can be a pretty stressful time. One of the major causes for holiday-related stress is the costs. Between gifts and events, it’s important to plan out a holiday budget. That way, you can keep the stress low while keeping the holiday spirit alive…

Holiday Budget: Plan Accordingly

Be honest

The best kind of holiday budget is an honest holiday budget. The sooner you give your finances an honest look, the better off you’ll be. Divorce can be pretty costly. As a result, you might not have as much money for the holidays as you’re used to. That means you’re going to have to plan accordingly.

Take the time to sit down and really plan for everything. That means gifts, food, travel costs, and anything else that comes to mind. From here, you can see just how much you can spend based on what you have. Keep in mind, though, that you shouldn’t let your spending get out of hand. The last thing you need is some holiday debt!

Work with your ex

Your ex will also play a role in your holiday budget. Even if you had a very peaceful divorce, you might be tempted to go “all out” on the kids’ gifts. Maybe you feel bad about the divorce, so you really want to “wow” the kids. However, you’ll just be setting yourself up for some trouble.

Trying to “upstage” your ex can result in you spending too much, worsening your relationship with them, and confusing your kids. Instead, try to work with your ex instead. Talk ahead of time about the gifts your kids want, what’s feasible and what isn’t, and who will buy what. That way, you both can deliver a good experience for the kids.

Be careful of the past

It might be appealing to try and celebrate the holidays as if nothing has changed. At first, this might seem like a good way to help your kids still get in the festive spirit. What you’ll quickly find, however, is that this is a fast way to throw your holiday budget all out of sorts.

The fact is that things are going to be a bit different moving forward. Trying to reclaim that past might not just be costly, but also a bit painful emotionally. Rather, it’s good to come up with new ways to celebrate. Even if you can’t get as many decorations as you did before, the new traditions will mean much more in the long run.