Faster, Cheaper, Better?
The world of technology is forever moving forward and there’s ever increasing pressure for you to spend your hard earned cash on the latest gadgets or upgrades. Old versions of technology that a year or two ago were new and innovative, suddenly become obsolete when they no longer support the applications you use regularly. Software upgrades can cause your systems to slow down so that they become too sluggish to use, resulting in you upgrading your hardware too, in frustration.
We’re living in such a throw-away society that when something breaks, it often feels easier and cheaper to replace it with the latest model. We don’t test the assumption that it’s cheaper and justify it further by convincing ourselves that we need all the latest features that the new model offers. That’s exactly what manufacturers influence us to think – in the interest of their business and shareholders – and so we fall into their trap.
We’re not denying that shiny new technology can give you a feel-good buzz; we only want you to consider the other (sometimes hidden) costs… or challenge you to consider the psychological triggers that make these products difficult to resist.
Pay & Display – Have You Paid?
Modern innovation is important for the development of society. But it comes at a price. Not just the price tag but, more importantly, the way that it’s changing our habits and spending decisions.
By succumbing to the pull to buy products that are sexy and fashionable with short lifespans, you’re training your brain to make impulsive choices that supply short-term boosts, rather than incentivising long-term rewards with delayed gratification. For those of us who already find it hard to resist instant gratification, this can create pretty disastrous consequences.
Is resistance really futile?
Even if you don’t consider yourself a consumer, we live in an age where the best marketers are recruited to work in collaboration with the best product or software developers to create products that we’re likely to fall in love with. The question is, who’s driving your decisions to purchase – you or them?
Every time you resist the gravitational pull of instant gratification, you’re training your brain that your capable of waiting. And that delayed gratification is worth it. Experiments and research has discovered that this ability to prioritise long-term goals above short-term desires is a critical component to success.
We’re not anti-consumerism. We’re just anti-unconscious-consumerism-that-you-can’t-afford-right-now. We want to help you avoid your future selves having to pay for today’s spends. And we know that acquiring more material possessions doesn’t make us any happier, despite what advertisers would lead us to believe.
Developing Sustainable Value
As business owners, we want you to make conscious choices. We want to help you build your business and your assets. We don’t want you to become an asset in someone else’s business to the detriment of your own.
To avoid succumbing to the trap of unconsciously spending more money on technology than you can afford, we suggest asking yourself the following questions before going for that next upgrade:
- Will this add value to my business?
- How could this purchase delay what I really want most out of life?
- Have I budgeted for this? If not, do I really need it?
- If I do spend it, who benefits?
- What am I not funding if I choose to buy this?
- Is the pull to buy this because I feel that I deserve to have the things that other people have?
- Is it more cost-effective to maintain what I already have? Does it do the job?
Delaying gratification isn’t easy for most of us. Challenging your spending decisions in this way will prevent you from being influenced by someone else’s business model. Focus on your life plan and the things that truly bring value to your life.