Ever since I started this journey to become debt free, I have tried to take a harder look at my purchases from ever which way and angle. Is this necessary right now? Can I possibly put this off? Will I regret buying this later? I feel these are necessary questions to ask so you don’t end up buying lots of useless crap you don’t need. The problem is that you sometimes have to deal with the “green eyed monster” as I like to call him, and he is not nice by any means. This is the feeling you get when you see someone else with something you really would like to own. It could be a handbag, clothes, electronics, or even a slightly newer car than the one you are driving. After all, we are all human and sometimes we get a case of Comparititis (yes, that is the medical term). Its only natural but how do you deal with it? Well, this is what I do:
1. Appreciate what you have. I know it sounds cheesy, but studies have shown that the happiest people are the one who do not take even the simplest things in their lives for granted. Remember that just having food to eat and a roof over your head are luxuries that many in the world do not have access to. I find that reciting a little mantra about how you are thankful for what you have helps even when you are feeling low. It does not take way the green eyed monster completely, but it does provide some perspective-especially if you do this over time.
2. You simply do not know everything about that person’s situation. Say you see a person walking down the street with the latest cell phone. You look at it and instantly feel the green eyed monster barking at you with full force. You peer down at your not-so-new technology cell phone that doesn’t have the latest updates or cool features. Just remember that you don’t know that person’s situation or what they did to get that item. They could have put themselves in debt to buy it or gotten it as a gift by someone they don’t even like. I like to say to myself that there is probably a good chance that the person bought it on credit and will be paying off the interest for years to come. I tell myself that it is much better to be on the path to being debt-free than being on the path to financial destruction. I know that this isn’t always true but its scary how many times this is the case. Some people would rather not have anything to eat that day than deprive themselves of the latest, trendy toy.
3. Take a break from Social Media. You might want to call me crazy on this one, but the truth is Facebook/Twitter/Foursquare/Google+/Pinterest/MySpace and every other social media outlet can really feed the green eyed monster to no end. It is just too tempting to go run out and get new things when you see that all your friends are sporting new apparel or getting new vehicles. I, myself, am on an indefinite break from facebook (the only social media site I use) because I got tired of of feeling inadequate from the dozens of people who are content in spending what they don’t have. It is distracting from my final mission (hee hee) and I feel much better now that I am not online there as much.
So remember: the green eyed monster can be tough, but there are ways to get him before he gets bad. Bear in mind these simple pointers and you will be a master monster slayer in no time!