The Good Thing About Saving

Lyndsay and I are very blessed to have a house that we love and the ability to do things that we love and enjoy. On the other hand we are by no means rolling in dough (I mean, that would be so messy–who wants Pillsbury’s all over their knickers?). Let me just say we do alright. But we don’t have an abundance of disposable income. We usually have to save up for more expensive items but we can eventually get the things we need/want.

I heard a successful business man on a podcast this week who immediately bought one of the new Apple Macbooks that were released this week. He said later that day he bought a second one because “he wanted two”. Did I mention that the new Macbooks cost $1,244? I didn’t? Well, they do. So this gentlemanspent at least $2,488 in one day. It was probably on a credit card if I had to guess.

Let me cut to the chase. I am typically not an impulse buyer. If I see something at a store that I would really love I will usually shop around endlessly to find it cheaper online or elsewhere. Despite this I am still just as fickle as any other consumer. My wants can change very easily and many times it’s just a matter of my “getting over” a new product and thinking straight again. The typical cycle for me goes like this:

Josh’s Four Phases of New Product Lust

Phase 1: Product discovery–Oh my gosh, Lyndsay!!! Look what Apple (or whoever) came out with! This would be SO cool to use! Look you can do X, Y, and Z with it. Oh man. They’ve really outdone themselves. I’ve got to save up for one of those (since rarely do I have cash on hand to immediately purchase any item that would illicit this reaction).

Phase 2: Saving–Crap! It’s gonna take me for freakin’ ever to save up $X00. What can I sell?

Phase 3: Product Re-evalutaion–Fact: I had a life before discovering this product. Fact: There probably isn’t anything that this product will do for me that I currently can not live without or that would greatly enhance my current life situation. Conclusion: What I have currently (or alternative cheaper product) will serve my needs just as well.

Phase 4: Return to status quo–I do not have said product and everything is still alright with the world.

On every occasion I have made it through this process before making any wild-hair purchase and thus I am better off. This innate mechanism along with limited disposable income has saved me much heartache and regret. Now there are times when I realize that I really could use said product and it really would satisfy a real need/want. In that case I get through process, determine that I really could use the product and continue saving. In the meantime prices usually drop.

So What Was It This Time?

Recently I went bananas over a mobile phone (yes, I know it’s silly). The phone was a fully-featured phone by LG with a touch screen interface (since I do not want to switch to AT&T for the iPhone this one seemed like a good choice). However I would have to pay a certain sum of money for the phone. After having my mind work through the four phases I have decided that I do not really want that phone after all. At the time I was willing to forego the slightly more expensive iPod Touch, an item that I really do want and could really use. I was temporarily enamored with the phone. I soon decided that even though I love electronics such as computers and iPods, cell phones are not a big deal to me. I would use an iPod Touch almost constantly whereas I would enjoy the features of this phone only occasionally. Once again, the four phase cycle has saved me from making a purchase I could later regret.

Can the thing that was created say to the One who created it ‘why have you made me like this?’

Rather, I say “Thank you, Lord, for making me this way.”  How have you been saved by from a potentially regrettable purchase in the past?  Or what purchases have you made for which you were later sorry?

Josh H.



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