It’s that time of year again – the time when people lose their minds for black Friday deals. As someone who absolutely loathes shopping, I’d like to share with you something that has gotten me through these obnoxious times.
You don’t need it. You really don’t.
Sure, it’s the latest trendy bridle, or a saddle pad that will perfectly match your breeches, or a huge selection of discounted breeches… but you really don’t. Just because it’s on sale doesn’t mean you need it.
There’s a difference between a want and a need. When you buy a want, you’re buying an item that provides you with short term happiness. It gives you a thrill in the moment, but then the luster dies, and you move on. Except now you’re out $$. A need is something you get and use for years upon years. It will continually bring you happiness because you will be continually using it.
But focusing on needs over wants, that means you have money for other things. For example, I’m never against paying for experiences. In my opinion, the more you can do, the better. Visit an embassy. Travel, both local and international. Go to more horse shows.
Don’t load up on lots of little items that take away from the big picture. If you want to show and compete, that’s awesome! Spend your money on lessons and shows. Little things, things you don’t need to show, like the fanciest new helmet, or even a new belt, might not seem like a big purchase, but how many of these inconsequential purchases are you making? If you calculated how many new shirt you bought this year, even those $10 ones, how much did you spend? AND, what did you do with the shirts you already bought? Did you actually need new shirts, or are you just stuffing more shirts into an overly crowded shirt drawer?
I bought my farm when I was 26 years old because I saved my money. I wanted to take lessons and show, and I obviously wanted to look super stylish and amazing all the time, but I thought about the bigger picture. I need money for the downpayment. I need money for a truck and trailer. I need money for a tractor. The only way to get money is to keep it when you have it.
This might sound like the most obvious thing in the world, but once you spend money, it’s gone. It’s hours of your life that you put into your job, you’re never getting back that time, and therefore, that money, back. If you calculate your hourly rate into items you purchase, are those breeches equal to 2 hours of your life…or more? Spending that money will take you how much further away from your long term goals?
As you go shopping on this most terrible of days, just keep in mind:
You don’t need it.