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SCVNews.com | Opinion/Commentary: Making the ‘I Wants’ Fall Away | 11-24-2012
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Commentary by Jennifer Fischer
| Saturday, Nov 24, 2012

Black Friday has come and gone. Small Business Saturday is in full swing – or may have come and gone, as well, depending on when you are reading this – and Cyber Monday is just around the corner.

This frenzy of shopping madness and deals, deals, deals focuses all of our attention – and our kids’ attention, too –  on “I Wants,” and often the list just gets longer and longer and the spending goes up, up, up. Maybe even out of control.

Sometimes the “I Wants” seem so pressing that we spend funds we do not really have on things we definitely do not need. (Keep those receipts. Even if you got a great deal on Black Friday, if you realize later that the item is unnecessary, return it.)

I know many families try to set up strategies to address this. I have friends who use this system: Want, Need, Wear, Read. It is called “Simple Gift Giving” by many: Children get one item they want, one item they need, one new article of clothing and one new book. It can be a good strategy to keep Christmas manageable. It can work well for adults, too.

I discovered that the “gratitude” focus I’ve had for the month of November has helped me a lot to keep my “I Wants” minimal. By focusing on the act of appreciating, every day, what I have, the “I Wants” simply fall away.

I hope your Thanksgiving offered you many opportunities for appreciation – for family and friends, for a delicious meal, perhaps for football or a pleasant post-meal walk with a full belly.

For me, particularly now as a parent, I find many opportunities for appreciation in our community: when I visit the duck pond with my sons and see how happy it makes them to watch the ducks, or when we discover a park in town where we had not played before (because we have so many great parks here!), or during an outing to the Town Center, which makes it easy to shop with little ones – one parent in the play zone with the kids while the other shops; then switch – or because we have such a quick drive to many wonderful beaches.

My community gives me lots of reasons to be thankful, or rather, appreciative.

Now I want to know: What do you appreciate in the SCV? Send your comments to @IndieJenFischer on Twitter #AppreciateSCV or The Good Long Road on Facebook. I would love to keep the conversation going.

 

Jennifer Fischer is co-founder of the SCV Film Festival, a mom of two, an independent filmmaker and owner of Think Ten Media Group, whose Generation Arts division offers programs for SCV youth. She writes about her parenting journey on her blog, The Good Long Road. Her commentary is published Saturdays on SCVNews.com.

 

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