A failure to understand delayed gratification
Working toward something is not a concept many members of the middle-class are familiar with. And who can blame them? The way marketing and advertising are done today, it’s all about more, more, more. And it must be achieved now, now, now. Falling for that mentality is easy. Subliminal messages tell us not to wait. Waiting is not cool. If you don’t get it or do it now, you’re a loser. You’ll be a laughing stock. You might want to dismiss this as foolishness, but odds are you’ve done it too.
You’ve looked at something in the store that you know you don’t need to have. But it is something you’d like to have. Now, things that you need to have must be purchased. But things that you want to have do not need to be acquired right there and then. But suddenly, you decide on impulse. And soon you’re standing in the check-out queue with your credit card out, ready to be swiped. A month later, the bill arrives. You got instant gratification from buying what you wanted. And now you have long-term buyer’s regret because you have to make those monthly payments.
If you want something enough, you should be prepared to wait for it. Using a credit card to purchase something that you should be saving for instead is unwise. The accumulated debt can push you to the precipice of financial self-destruction.
There’s nothing more satisfying than saving for something and paying cash for it. You can take a certain amount of pride in that. Delaying the gratification makes the purchase even more significant. You keep yourself out of unnecessary debt. And you have a new prized possession that is all yours.