If money didn’t exist, we’d all be rich. However the reality is that society needs a simple and effective medium of exchange so the economy can run efficiently. Since money is so ubiquitous, yet also finite, we should try to maximize its utility by controlling and spreading our spending over time. Sometimes this means delaying a purchase until a future date or just not buy it altogether.
Chronic shoppers often have to overcome a sense of deprivation when they pass up an opportunity to spend. But changing the way we think about delayed gratification can help. 🙂 Instead of dwelling on what we will potentially miss out on we can think in terms of what we will gain instead. 😉
Next time we decide to not buy something, we can tell ourselves that since we’re not spending $X on that, we can add this $X to our emergency fund, or build up a larger down payment for a future home to raise a family in. Or we can use this $X to pay down our debts. Once our debts are completely gone we can work less, travel more, and take up new hobbies like pottery making. 😀
Everyone’s reasons will be different. But the basic idea is use our goals, aspirations, and dreams to convince our brains to not feel deprived because of our decision, by replacing the temptation for an immediate reward with a larger, or more enduring reward. Rather than wallow in self pity we should feel proud and anticipative of a better life tomorrow.
For some of us it takes some discipline to break the overspending habit. But if we imagine our lives laid out in a timeline from cradle to grave its easier to conceptualize our finances from a broader perspective. It can be a profound realization that our present situation is merely a point in time in the long range picture, and for most readers of this blog, the majority of our lives and experiences are still ahead of us.
Almost every successful individual begins with 2 internal beliefs: The future can be better than the present, and I have the power to make it so. 😉
Random Useless Fact:
A chipmunk’s heart beats 350 times per minute on average, but when in goes into a light hibernation state during the winter its heart rate drops to just 15 beats per minute.