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valentine day and your money: what should be the resolution?

Aside Posted on Updated on

Valentine’s Day is a double-
edged sword.
The occasion has the power
to make you happy (and
relieved) that you’re with
someone special. It can also
make you feel disappointed
that you are alone. If you’re
in an unsatisfying
relationship, that can also
become painfully apparent
during the season.
The season can also make
you apprehensive about
social media platforms.
Facebook? Twitter? No way are you
touching them the next few
days!
With the sudden peaks of
valleys of emotions that are
common during this holiday
come the temptations to also
behave erratically when it
comes to your spending
habits.
Remember: romance may be
the spark that sets the
relationship burning, but
reality is the balance that
makes sure nothing really
burns to the ground.
Let’s talk about some
common situations couples
may find themselves in
during this season:
1. “It’s fine to splurge as
much as I want today.
Valentine’s Day is only once
a year!”
The Romance:
A surprise trip to goa or Paris, a
lavish buffet dinner for two
at a 5-star hotel or an
amusement park rented for
the day so that only the two
of you can enjoy it together
are some ostentatious
examples of romantic
celebrations. Right?
The Reality:
Sure, what you did is going
to be a big hit on Facebook
and people are going to talk
about you. On the other
hand, it’s going to be a big
hit on your bank savings
account, too.
The Resolution:
A relationship built on a
shaky foundation of
expensive dates and
luxurious trips is only going
to last for a while (unless
you’re a billionaire, and even
then there’s no guarantee).
Before Valentine’s Day, talk
with your partner and agree
on a spending limit for your
celebration. You might say,
“But that’s not romantic!”
But you know what else is
not romantic and even
chaotic? You sweating,
panicking and palpitating the
day after Valentine’s Day
because you just realized
you’re broke after you’ve
spent majority of your life
savings on a grand gesture
of romantic love.
Even mid-priced gifts in high
volumes take their toll on
your back account.
2. “Love, I want (insert
expensive item here) as a
present. If you love me,
you’ll buy it for me…”
The Romance:
Getting 50 boxes of Belgian
chocolates, being showered
with 12 bouquets of roses,
and receiving any other
high-priced item as gifts are
some people’s idea of
romance. The higher the
price is, the more you’re
loved, right?
The Reality:
Valentine’s Day isn’t about
who got the better gift or
who spent the bigger
amount.
It’s not a competition for
love.
It’s a celebration of love. And
who says love is about
comparison, anyway?
The Resolution:
You know what’s romantic
and practical? Spend time,
not money.
Why don’t you and your
partner try something that’s
new to you both? If you
always go to the same
restaurant, try a new one. If
you go out all the time, cook
and stay in. If you’re always
low-key, head out for a night
on the town. Avoid the
excesses that people often
indulge in then feel guilty
over later.
3. “Let’s enjoy this, okay? To
be honest, I borrowed
money from (friend/
relative) because this day is
special.”
The Romance:
Aw, your partner borrowed
money from a close friend
just so the both of you can
spend Valentine’s together?
This is incredibly sweet.
You’re so lucky to have a
brave and thoughtful partner
– right?
The Reality:
There are several reasons
why a person had to borrow
money just to spend
Valentine’s. Maybe this
person:
Didn’t have enough
income
Didn’t save in advance
Procrastinated
Didn’t have enough time
to save since he thought
he was going to spend
Valentine’s alone
Might have genuinely
wanted to make the day
special, even though the
person is low on funds
Whatever the reason is,
borrowing money is never
romantic. It’s messy, it’s
complicated and it can even
affect relationships.
The Resolution:
You and your partner should
equally contribute to the
celebration, based on your
income. If the total amount
for your date is rs10,000 for
example, split it accordingly.
Don’t just let one person take
on the whole bill!
Now, if one party can’t afford
to shell out much cash, agree
to the V-day plans
beforehand so you both
know what to expect.
Look around for ways to cut
costs. Some websites offer
great Valentine’s
promotions. Take a road trip
instead of the vacation that
requires air travel. Get
creative. Don’t let money be an issue.
4. “Good thing I have my
credit card! Sky’s the limit.”
The Romance:
You have your magical plastic
card with you, so anything
you want to buy, eat or use
is just a swipe away. You’re
living the dream.
The Reality:
Let’s be clear: using your
credit card for convenience
is okay. This is provided that
you can easily pay the full
balance on time – you just
don’t want to carry a lot of
cash with you.
However, using your credit
card compulsively at every
opporunity is not okay. This
means that you didn’t plan or
prepare beforehand, and you
are putting yourself in
danger for debt that will
hound you all year.
The Resolution:
Valentine’s Day happens
every year. It’s not an
unexpected occasion! You
have plenty of time to plan
the budget, and whether or
not it’s going to be a big deal
for you. From March to
January, set aside a monthly
amount solely for your
Valentine’s celebration – if
that’s really what you want.
This applies to you even if
you’re single – who knows,
you might fall in love along
the way, right?
Couples, note your
relationship stage. Sure, the
longer you’ve been dating,
usually, the grander the gift.
But if there are money
troubles, parties in a long-
term relationship will
understand that the way you
celebrate the holiday doesn’t
make any sweeping
statements about you or
your compatibility.
Don’t let Valentine’s Day
pressure you into making
irrational decisions.
Sure, people say and do crazy
things in love.
But if you say and do crazy
things most of the time,
things won’t turn out so
great for you financially, and
that doesn’t look good at all
for any relationship.

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