I have to admit there are days when I think that a new tennis racquet or a few new books from the local Barnes and Noble would make me feel great! However after I stop and think I realize that the two Prince racquets
I own are great and I’m not going to play better tennis with a new Babolat or Wilson racquet. And, moreover, I can just get my name on the waiting list at the local library for that new novel by Jonathan Franzen
. So, most of the time I convince myself to not spend, but it is a constant battle
(even for folks with a bit of personal finance know-how).
Part of figuring out why spending money (in most cases) is a bad thing is about understanding yourself and what truly makes you happy. Now, this can take years to figure out and is one of life’s greatest challenges, so in the interim I’ve put together a few reasons why I think people spend money. Here’s my simple and straightforward list (do you agree?):
1. S/he thinks stuff will make them happy.
2. S/he thinks I must have an iPhone, Lexus, Nike sneakers, etc. because my neighbor or co-worker owns them.
3. S/he is convinced the advertising she just watched, read, listened to, etc. is the truth.
4. S/he lacks fulfillment from non-material things in her life.
5. S/he is bored, lonely, confused, depressed.
6. S/he has the wrong friends.
7. S/he lacks focus.
8. S/he cares too much about personal appearance.
9. S/he is brand loyal.
10. S/he equates success with possessions.
11. S/he is addicted.
12. S/he lacks true friendships and family connections
13. S/he learned the behavior from mom and dad.
14. S/he is conditioned and has not spent any considerable amount of time outside of the US.
15. S/he does not appreciate nature, reading, and peaceful states (read: she cannot be alone).
16. S/he does not know how to have a good time (without spending money).
17. S/he is credit card dependent.
18. S/he believes she will never improve her financial situation.
19. S/he is not crafty.
20. S/he has never felt what it’s like NOT to have money or the ability to spend it.