By Carol Tuttle, Master Energy Therapist and the author of the best-selling book, Remembering Wholeness: A Personal Handbook for Thriving in the 21st Century.

Every year your millions of people fall into the same trap. Overspending, getting stressed out and obsessing about presents, family gatherings, shopping and all the other trappings that go with the holiday season

I say enough is enough. Instead of turning the holidays into a nightmare, let me show you how you can make some easy changes that will result in the best (and cheapest) season you've had in years.

* Focus on traditions and family experiences this year.

Gather your family together the first week of December for a family meeting.Brainstorm with your family the traditions of the past that you have experienced together.List them on a large piece of paper for all to see.

Next brainstorm traditions you have not experienced yet, but think you would like to.Everyone gets a say, do not discuss anything at this point, just make the list.

Now that you have a list of too many things to do for traditions, go through and let everyone cast a vote forfive traditions that they would like to experience.The topfive vote-getters are the ones to experience this year.

* How to break your pattern of going in to debt for the holidays.

During the first week of December, sit down with your spouse, (if you are a single parent, sit down with yourself), and decide how much you can afford to spend this holiday season.Do not decide based on what you would like to purchase, make the spending decision based on what you can take out of the bank without jeopardizing your finances or creating debt.

Next go to the bank and withdraw the amount you have decided on and place it in a white envelope and use this cash to make your holiday purchases.This keeps you from making emotional buying decisions with your credit card and eliminates holiday debt.

* Four things every family can do to make it a more memorable holiday season without breaking the bank.

  1. Give gifts of service to one another rather than items from the store.
  2. Rather than buy a lot of presents, go on a trip that is affordable.Forgo the presents in place of the trip.
  3. Find a family in need and take a portion of your money to help this family get the basics they need. Make sure you let your children do the shopping so they have a first-hand experience seeing what others need that we can take for granted.
  4. Make this year a Thrift Store Christmas.The rule is every gift has to be purchased at a thrift store.You would be amazed at the high-quality items in good condition that you can find at thrift stores these days.

With the increase in purchasing, people in today's culture do not hang on to things like our ancestors did.We get rid of things a lot faster and in really good condition.Besides just saving a lot of money, the money you are spending is going to a good cause as all thrift stores are tied to good causes.

Learn more clever ways to reduce your holiday stress and debt on my popular audio CD Unplug the Christmas Machine where you will learn what children want from their parents even more than presents, and it doesn't cost a thing!Make this the most stress-free holiday season yet.Carol is a recovered holiday over-achiever and spender.She was a Christmas machine gone wild!You will learn Carol's life-changing secrets for the holidays on her best-selling Audio CD Unplug the Christmas Machine. Just click on the title to review this product and all of Carol's life-changing books, CDs and DVDs that are highly recommended by Dr. Mercola.

Dr. Mercola's Comment:Earlier this year I had an opportunity to attend a three-day Internetseminar with Carol and had a chance to get to know her. Although I enjoyed the seminar, the highlight was the opportunity to get to know Carol.

Without a doubt, energy psychology is one of the greatest tools I have ever encountered in the healing modalities and EFT is an amazing application of this discipline. Carol happens to be one of the most gifted EFT clinicians I know of.

If you want to apply some of the principles Carol discusses in the above article and learn powerful healing techniques to release the emotional issues that are keeping you from living a more fulfilling life, you willwantto pick up Carol's best-selling Audio CDUnplug the Christmas Machine.You can also reviewCarol's other life-changing books, CDs and DVDs thatI highly recommended.

Carolstopped seeing clients awhile ago so she can concentrate on sharing her message over the Internet.However, there was such a demand for her services that shedecided to limit her patient load andincrease her fees to $10,000 for a series ofcomprehensive individual consultations-- even at thoserates she has more clients than she can handle.

InOctober Iinvited Carol to spend some time at my center to teach my staff some of her principles. We had a great time and decided that we will offer a joint seminar in Chicago on April 6, 7 and 8. I want to tell you that now as by then it will have been nearly two years since I have held a major event. The last one was also in Chicago in June 2004.

It was an EFT event with Gary Craig and we sold out the 550 seats in a few days and had a waiting list of over 500 people who could not attend.

Well, this event should be far better than the one last year as we have some incredible programs that will absolutely amaze you at the benefits you will receive.

Can't tell you much more about it now, but I do want to forewarn you to mark you calendars now for next April 6-8 and plan on being in Chicago for an event you will remember the rest of your life.

Author's Bio: 

This article is reprinted from Mercola.com, the world's #1 most visited and trusted natural/alternative health website. For a limited time only, you can take the FREE "Metabolic Type Test" to help you learn the right foods for your particular body type so you can achieve optimal fitness & health. Just go to http://www.mercola.com/forms/mt_test.htm right now to take this quick test!