Published on January 12th, 2014 | by Pete1
Top Tips on How to Shop Like Spock
For those of you who don’t automatically get the reference, Spock was a character from the original Star Trek series. Now hold on, I can see some of you thinking about sneaking away because of the Star Trek reference; stay with me. The only reason I mention Spock is that he was Vulcan, which means that he and his alien kin lived by logic and reason, and worked to ensure that their decision making process was not interfered with by emotion.
In summary – Spock would have made an awesome moneysuperstar. A lot of bad decisions people make in reference to spending money are triggered by emotions, and this is something I have been guilty of myself. You feel a bit down, so you buy yourself something nice to cheer yourself up. You get a promotion, so you feel excited and happy, and treat yourself to something nice to reward yourself etc etc. So how can we ‘live long and prosper’ when it comes to our money? Well, we can all shop like I imagine Spock would:
1. Calm down before you get your wallet out
If you know that you are experiencing intense emotions (either positive or negative), do something to calm down before you make any money related decision. Go for a walk, talk to a friend or partner, try some meditation. Just do something before you go to spend money. Once your emotions are more balanced, you are in a much better position to make the right choice. This isn’t about making sure you don’t spend the money, just that you are making the logical and rational decision when you do.
2. Write a list
If you are entering a physical money spending location, then take a list. If you have spent time producing and thinking about your list, preferably a few days before you go shopping, then you can be more confident that your list represents important well thought out items, as opposed to spontaneous emotional splurges. Once you have your list, stick to it. The list represents your hard work and mindfulness, don’t disrespect it!
3. Leave if you need to
Beam me up Scotty! If you find yourself close to making an impulsive purchase that seem to be more emotion based than logical, leave for a bit and catch your breath. Ask yourself questions – why do I want to buy this? Do I need it? Can I justify it? Will it impact on other financial commitments I have? If after this process (and a cup of tea normally) things are clearer. If you find yourself still leaning towards buying it, you can still be confident that the decision was not rushed.
4. Use support
There’s life Jim, but not as we know it. If you think that you may be being bullied into a quick decision by your emotions – then talk to someone else. Talk through your logic with that other person (try to make sure they are not likely to simply agree with you, they need to make you work!). They might ask you questions, they should be an effective, but nice, devil’s advocate. This is another way of ensuring you are dealing in facts, rather than emotions.
So, go forth, and boldly shop like no man has shopped before. Ha! I look forward to reading all of your ‘Captain’s Log’.