You might be shocked to learn (even horrified) that I traditionally do all of my Christmas shopping on Christmas Eve.
I stumbled upon this oasis of a shopping experience a few years ago when for some reason or another, I was forced into the stores the eve before Christmas. I was astounded to witness how few people actually shop for gifts on this day.
So while the masses have migrated from gift traps to supermarkets and bottle shops (aka liquor stores), the few that are brave enough to leave it to the last minute are rewarded with relative tranquility.
Today I did my shopping a day early and started my quest at 4:30pm this afternoon and was in the car soon after 6pm. Done and dusted. Yep, that's right, all done.
So what's the secret to power shopping?
It's about being open minded and seeing what appears. I liken the experience to hunter gatherers. Hunters know what they want and go for it. It might take days to get their kill, but they are dedicated to the hunt. They'll do whatever it takes to claim their prize.
Power shoppers are gatherers on a mission. They are exploratory by nature and tend to fossick through what might appear as random objects, searching for what would appeal to the intended recipient. They go to the quiet corners, bottom shelves and generally have an open mind and allow the gifts present themselves.
Have faith and listen to your intuition.
When you have a limited time, you get into a zone. No distractions. You are there with a purpose to fulfil. It's amazing how much you can get done in such a short space of time. Notice your feelings. There'll always be an indication as to whether you're on or off the right track.
I have to admit, I was a bit clumsy at first and purchased things despite my gut saying no. My head was all too quick to settle with an "it'll do", then I'd go around the corner and discover the perfect present and my gut would spit out "see, I told you so!". Then I'd go into damage control and manage my post-purchase dissonance - usually by getting a refund for the not-so-perfect present. A slight time-waster, but a small price to pay when you have the entire shopping centre to yourself.
So that's it, all my shopping done in record time and a day early. Fabulous.
Until tomorrow, learn to maximise your time during the silly season and get tips from an expert ;-)