In trying to be more mindful with my possessions, I’ve started to think about how sales play into mindful purchasing. How many times have you seen something on sale or on a “deals” site and purchased it simply because it was a great deal? We’ve all been there, and if you want to put an end to it you need to change your relationship with your things.
I think of mindfulness as it relates to possessions as making sure everything has a use and is enjoyable to use. It can also be extended into buying the best you can afford1. If you only purchase what you will use often and enjoy, it makes sense to pick an item that will last you a lifetime. Of course this comes at a higher cost, however, can save you in the long run (not to mention the environmental impact of disposable items). These products also tend to come from companies you can feel good supporting.
Now that I’ve changed my outlook, I don’t browse the internet for deals and sales. Whenever I see a deal on Twitter (or elsewhere) that seems too good to pass up, I can let it go. If there is something new I want, after completing my research, I add the item to my wishlist. If I need it now and can fit it into my budget, I make the purchase. If it’s something that can wait or I don’t want to pay full price, I save up for it and keep an eye out for a good price (usually by checking the company’s website, email list, or Twitter account). Gradually acquiring these items spreads out the pain on the wallet, plus, there is no need to discard items you are replacing before their time is done.
Making this adjustment can take some time, especially if you aren’t used to prices of high quality items, but it is worth it in the long run. My hope is to eventually only have things that are pleasing to use and can be repaired so they will last a lifetime.
- Of course this doesn't always apply. For example, if there is a tool I need for a single house project and I can't find one to borrow, I won't always buy the best. ↩︎