Be Grateful, Spend LessDecember 11, 2013
In everything we do and in everyplace we go, temptations surround us. The desire to spend is so strong and forceful, even those on a well-planned and strict budget find themselves making unexpected purchases on a regular basis. Whether one splurges and buys a few big products, or many little treats, over time it can all add up to the same personal crisis known as debt.
Instead of beating yourself up and having a case of buyer’s remorse the next time you buy something on a whim, learn from the trigger which caused you to spend. You may have to do some personal investigation and introspection but detecting the reason why you tend to make impulse buys can reveal a great deal about yourself. Consulting a professional is often very helpful in speeding this process along.
Perhaps there is a void you are trying to fill. It could be that you are attempting to buy love, attention or affection. Or, you may be longing for acceptance from a certain crowd of peers or even from society itself. Take notice if you search for validation through or with your purchases.
Is the lure of and promises made from well-placed and strategically designed ads too much for you to resist? Maybe you could use a little practice on your self-control. Become aware of your emotional reaction to marketing techniques, from all of the new car commercials to those glossy cosmetics ads. Is there a particular genre of ad that sparks your need to spend?
The easiest way to keep spending under wraps is to become enlightened to your own unique habits and emotional triggers. However, if this is not enough, or if it is too difficult to ascertain in due time, another effective method to curb excessive spending is found in one simple age old philosophy, “Be grateful for what you already have.”
Do you have food in your refrigerator? Be grateful. Do you have a bed in sleep in? Be grateful. Maintain this positive attitude daily. It is not only applicable towards finances, but also to life as a whole. Our existence is comprised primarily on our own special attitude towards and perception of the world.
Being appreciative and grateful allows us to let go of many of our preconceived notions about what we “should” or “must” have in order to be fulfilled and happy people. When you regularly acknowledge that your basic necessities are met, as opposed to ignoring them, or being unsatisfied by them, it can generate a certain train of thankful thoughts.
This can also lead to the realization that so many others around you do not even have their own, or their families, basic needs met. Volunteering at a homeless shelter, food pantry or soup kitchen can change your perception about how much money it takes to be happy. Furthermore, if you know someone in need of assistance, really put yourself in their shoes prior to judging their monetary predicaments or financial woes.