If you must go, go prepared.
Black Friday is one of those holiday traditions we all love to hate. We grump and moan about how greedy corporations are taking away from quality family time, but then right after dinner, we eagerly line up outside of Target to get a new TV.
In reality, trash-talking Black Friday is just another way to get into the holiday spirit. I mean, of course I'm going to complain about the long lines and the lack of time to properly digest my Thanksgiving dinner. But like, I'm still gonna go.
Because no matter how much I try to deny it, it doesn't feel like Christmas until I'm elbow to elbow with total strangers pulling scarves out of a box labeled "$5 and under." Not every tradition has to be built with the intent of love and togetherness. Some are created purely for entertainment and selfish shopping.
So even if you're still telling all your friends that you're not going to Black Friday this year, you might want to memorize my golden rules of surviving this unique holiday. You know, just in case.
Rule #1: Don't plan on actually buying anything.
Take it from me, having a list of items you want to buy never works. You can go through every coupon book and gift guide, download the app and be the first in line and there's still an 80% chance you'll be disappointed. Go shopping with a relaxed mindset, and maybe a few things you'd like to check out and I promise you'll have more fun.
Besides, the best Black Friday gifts are always unexpected. Like mittens with cat faces on them, or the cell phone case I bought last year that was literally just a nose, for example.
Rule #2: Understand that everyone is probably just annoyed as you are.
Don't huff and puff when someone accidentally runs over your foot with their shopping cart. The magic of Black Friday wears off in about 20 minutes, and then everyone realizes it's just a glorified traffic jam. A little kindness can go a long way. And if you can't do that, keeping your mouth shut will be just as effective.
Rule #3: Remember that the best, best part is holiday-themed lattes.
I'm sorry, but if you don't start your late night/early morning standing behind 20 people to get a peppermint mocha latte, then did you even Black Friday?