Surviving Silly Season

 The end of the year is in sight. You have worked hard and have hopefully achieved your goals for 2018. It's time to let your hair down and throw caution to the wind. Or is it?

This time of the year is not called 'silly season' without a reason. Even though this should be a time to celebration, it is normally also the time where people do silly stuff which could range from being amusing to seriously detrimental to your health and safety.

Below are some pointers on how to survive the silly season:

1. Be extra vigilant on your safety
It is not just you who wants to buy gifts for their kids. December is notorious for a spike in crime. Keep your doors and windows closed. Your neighbourhood thief is well aware that you are dying of the heat and will most probably sleep with your windows open. Lock your doors. Do not open for anyone that you do not know. Wait for the security gate to close before you drive away. Know your fellow residents. Make alarm if someone is on the premises that are not supposed to be there. Remind your neighbours to be as vigilant as you are. Know the number of your local police in case of emergency.

2. Think before you give
Christmas is a time of giving. Giving a helping hand to those in need is admirable, but it could have a direct impact on your safety and the safety of those around you. We have seen an increase of people opening their homes to homeless people during the last couple of months. This has resulted in thefts at a number of complexes. If you want to make a difference, contact your local registered charity organisations. Organisations like Tutela (previously Christian Social Council) has various programs and social workers that will be of benefit to those people who truly want to turn their lives around. Keep an eye out on our website for a list of more registered local charity organisations.

3. Active kids are happy kids
We know you had a stressful year and the first thing that you want to do when you get home is to fall on the couch and watch TV all night/weekend long. Studies have shown that only 30 minutes of active play with your children each day will not only increase your children's happiness but will have a super positive effect on your well being as well. And it does not have to break the bank. Check out our website for a list of free and almost free things to do to keep your children active and happy.

4. Drink Responsibly
It does not take a genius to see the destruction and mayhem that alcohol can cause to a family. Not to mention the additional burden it brings to your budget. Think before you drink. It normally starts out as one innocent drink. Which becomes two and before you know it you are caught in a spiral of destruction. The majority of issues that erupt over weekends and holidays, is alcohol induced. If you have difficulty saying no, it might be time to get informed. www.aasouthafrica.org.za

5.Think before you spend
Who does not love to spend? And with promotions like Black Friday and all sorts of Christmas specials flying around, it is easy to see why most people are broke in January. The best rule of thumb is not to spend if it is not on your budget. And never spend if you cannot buy it cash.

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