BLOG – Are we buying for compliments, to impress or out of real need?

Outdoor kitchens. I talk about them a lot.

In my Decongestion keynote speeches I talk about people who buy a new house 80km from the City Centre – bigger house, cheaper prices – so that they can have an Outdoor Kitchen. The Outdoor Kitchen (outdoor sink, fridge, oven etc) is typically located right next to the Indoor Kitchen!

Considering how often I talk about Outdoor Kitchens – something that quite frankly I think is ludicrous – I was delighted when last week I saw this post on Facebook – “Who has an outdoor kitchen? Thinking of buying one but it’s not cheap and how much do you use it?”.  The general consensus, from comments from Facebook ‘friends’, was that Outdoor Kitchens are an expensive waste of money that rarely get used.

How often do we buy things because we’ve seen them in someone else’s home?

On her blog ‘Recovering Shopaholic’, Debbie Roes, a personal development coach, explains some reasons for shopping. Here are three:

  1. Low self-esteem and insecurity—Debbie explains that for most of her life she’d struggled with low self-esteem and feelings of not being ‘good enough’. Wearing new and stylish clothes attracted compliments, which created a vicious cycle for her of constantly buying new clothes to keep up and be in fashion. Are we buying Outdoor Kitchens – and other luxury homewares – just for compliments?
  2. Boredom—When we don’t have a lot going on in life, we tend to shop more. A trip to the shopping centre provides a sense of excitement when we don’t have anything to do. Many people I talk with agree that most things we think we need to buy, are really things we want to buy.
  3. Past poverty and deprivation—Some people who shop too much do so because they’ve experienced childhood poverty or struggled with financial difficulties earlier in their lives. Lots of people tell me that they are guilty of buying expensive luxury items just to impress other people.

What do you think?

Until next time…

I’m Rachel Smith and I’m Underspent. I didn’t buy anything new or 2nd hand in 2014 and saved $52,680 (38% of my salary). I quit impulse shopping and saved my money. I changed my spending and transformed my savings. It started as a lifestyle experiment, but it changed my life, so I kept on going.

I’m the Author of Underspent and I’m teaching people like you how to break the habit of impulse shopping in 7 steps through my Underspent book, my weekly blog, FREE monthly challenges and FREE 30 days of money saving tips.
Underspent book is available in paperback ($12.99 or £7.40) and e-book, iBook and kindle formats ($2.99 or £1.70) in all online and high street/shopping centre book shops or buy a signed paperback copy ($12.99 + P&P) direct from me via my website ‪‪‪www.cyclingrachelsmith.com‬. I’ve purposely made the Underspent book affordable.‬‬