Everyone has that thing which brings them to their happy place……. for a short period of time. If you poll a one thousand people you will find everyone has a comfort vice. Many people use drugs, some people use work, others use television while many people use consumerism/materialism and the illusion of wealth as their comfort vice. If you wonder where the term retail therapy come from, think comfort debt.
In years past I used money, consumerism, materialism and debt like a drug. When my emotional state was down, relief was had by purchasing some truly unnecessary item to divert my attention away from my real life problems and issues. I have haunting memories of being depressed because I did not have enough cash on hand in my bank account. With my bank account being in the red zone and depression filling my emotional tank, the only relief I could muster was by buying something on credit to make me feel as if financially everything was OK. Let’s face it, being a human being is an exercise in excess and restraint, and I, like many of us humans had far more excess than restraint.
What most wisdom would suggest is life should be is a management of moderation. Realistically, life is more of a roller coaster, and when the sea we are sailing on is to calm, we feel justified to jump in shark infested waters with just a life preserver or knife, just to keep things exciting more often than not. Our issues are compounded when judgement, external acceptance and peer pressure come into the fold.
Think about the majority of the purchases you had made in your life. How many of those purchase were, I want therefore I need? A prime example is purchasing an automobile. Sure, we all understand the purpose of an automobile is to get you from point A to point B safely. Usually when shopping for an automobile the basic premise is a minor considerations. The pressing issue is how the automobile will make us feel, the physically and emotionally comfortable of the vehicle, the emotional safety and how people will judge us as we are associated with the automobile as a status symbol and envy project. Instead of purchasing a Prius which is a safe, economically sleek get it done vehicle, we opt for a Dodge Challenger. I as most of us, have made those purchases. The bigger issue comes from the fact of most car purchases and many other items are facilitated via a lease or credit terms. Putting you into depreciating debt. the item just purchased, be it a Television at Best Buy, booming car stereo, latest mobile phone (Don’t get me started on those), automobile or just about anything else in this world loses its value the exact moment you take “possession”. I want you to pay attention to the word possession vs ownership, because until you pay the asking price, lease and financial fees of the acquired product technically you are not the owner.
I recently found a purchase/lease agreement for a 1990 Geo Prism I once owned (eventually), the sticker price was $12570.00. If I had not paid the car off early, the car would have cost me something like $20,000. I would have gotten straight pimped. That is why I now purchase cars I can easily have in my possession for a minimum of 10 years.
It all comes down to comfort food, which relates to my earlier post “Are you financially Fat or Obese” . Are you just financially eating yourself into the black hole designed for you to stay in bondage with the chains of comfort holding you down. I wonder how the consumer landscape would appear if we could all remove our emotions from the equation of making purchases.
Let’s make wise choices and be free.
The Billionaire lifestyle Coach