I love Black Friday. I mean, I LOVE it. It’s officially the start of the holiday season for me. Normally, I can’t stand crowds. And standing in ridiculously long lines is right up there with getting a root canal. But there is something about the fellowship of everyone going out in the middle of the night for the same purpose that’s gratifying. Add to that the thrill of getting some great bargains and I’m all for it. What I am not for, however, is going out and shopping on Thanksgiving. I absolutely refuse to shop on Thanksgiving.
A sad new trend
There’s a sad trend in recent years of stores opening on Thanksgiving instead of at Midnight. Each year, stores are opening earlier and earlier. Some stores are open all day now. I find that very sad. There are so many people that now don’t have the option of being with their families for Thanksgiving dinner. Some aren’t able to celebrate the holiday at all.
Thanksgiving is a holiday that is supposed to be about being thankful and grateful. Instead, it’s been taken over by capitalism and consumerism. Instead of spending time with family and thinking about what we have, we spend the day trying to get more.
I refuse to shop on Thanksgiving because as part of my mission to live better, I want to take back my holiday. Thanksgiving in my house is going to be about being grateful and teaching my son to be grateful. We don’t need immediate gratification from a deal at a store.
Why do I refuse to shop on Thanksgiving?
When this trend first began, I worked in retail. I had to leave my family’s Thanksgiving dinner early because I had to be to work before we opened. That first year, as I did the math following Black Friday, I realized we made only a small amount extra than we would have on a normal Black Friday.
My boss was amazed, “Look, we made $$$ more this year!” I couldn’t seem to get through to him that if you subtracted the amount we made before midnight, the amount we made during the hours on Thanksgiving was actually pretty pathetic. And we had to pay time and a half for all of the employees working on the holiday.
Aside from the fact that stores aren’t actually making that much extra, I don’t want to be the reason people have to be pulled away from their families. There is nothing that I need so badly, or can get such an amazing deal on, that it would make me comfortable to be a part of that.
I get to enjoy my Thanksgiving with my family now that I don’t work in retail anymore, but there are many that don’t. That’s just not acceptable to me.
I begin my shopping at midnight on Black Friday, as was my original tradition. While I may not get to participate in any of the door busters that happen during the day on Thanksgiving, the vast majority of the things on my list are still available when I arrive.
I’ve missed out on a couple of things every year, but I think it’s worth it. I still get amazing deals and most of my holiday shopping completed.
It’s not necessary. If there’s a deal you absolutely have to have, you can get most of them on the stores websites. I’ve been able to get plenty of deals on Thanksgiving morning, before the stores even open with their doorbusters.
Why wait outside, make people have to come into work, stand in line, fight the crowd, and miss my own Thanksgiving when I can make three clicks online for the same thing?
Finally, I refuse to shop on Thanksgiving because it’s not the original tradition. Companies have started to turn Black Friday into a week long event, beginning with pre-Black Friday sales, and ending with Cyber Monday.
The tradition was always to go out on one day, just one, where the stores competed for your business by offering up the best deals. It was exhilarating. It was like a fun treasure hunt.
By shopping the deals all week long, it’s less fun. I enjoy it more to keep with the tradition of going to stores only on that one day.
I have a request.
If you have been going out on Thanksgiving to shop in recent years, lured in by the unbeatable deals, I ask that you reconsider and refuse to shop on Thanksgiving this year.
Consider all of the people who aren’t able to spend the holiday with their family for no other reason than their company’s desire to increase profits.
Help them live better by helping to change the trend and keep stores closed on Thanksgiving. Instead, stay home with your families and join me in continuing with the Black Friday shopping. It’s the original tradition.
-To your Better Life-