Shopping for New Things Has a Domino Effect
This is something we’ve all gone through. You go into a store to buy a certain item, and your aim is to just shop for that item. At first glance, it appears that you are following your shopping list. Your strategy, however, begins to fall apart like a stack of dominoes. You choose item after thing, and wind up paying far more than you planned… Despite the fact that you just searched for “ways to save money,” Because they match, a yellow shirt leads to a mustard scarf. Or, if color-coding is your thing, a brown shoe leads to a brown belt and tie.
The Diderot Effect
The Diderot Effect is the name given to this type of behavior. James Clear popularized it in his book, ‘Atomic Habits.‘ “The Diderot Effect implies that acquiring a new thing frequently causes a spiral of consumption that leads to subsequent acquisition,” he stated. It was named after Diderot, a guy who wished to enhance his goods after gaining some money. It began with him purchasing a suitable robe, but he quickly replaced thing after item in his home to reflect his “new status.” This is how you end up buying more than you intended. It is always just one purchase that sets off the chain reaction.
How it may have a negative impact on you
Obviously, shopping isn’t a negative thing. It is only when it is done subconsciously that it becomes an issue. When you shop, whether online or in person, you must be very conscious of what is going on. Allowing the Diderot Effect to control your purchasing decisions will result in financial stress. This is due to the fact that you will always spend money that was intended for something else.
How to save money by conquering it
Start by focusing on the things that matter. You can learn how to save money when you differentiate between your needs and wants.
You might need a new shoe because your old ones are bad. What you might not need is a new belt because you have others that are just fine!
Reduce Exposure: Instead of taking your card with you to the mall, withdraw the amount of money you need and keep your debit card away. This helps you eliminate the temptation to go on a shopping spree. Shopping with your card in hand can be fun, but will eventually lead to tears when you get home.
Go one month without buying anything new: You know, the way there is a #NoSodaMonthChallenge or a #30DaySquatsChallenge. You can self-impose a #NoNewPurchaseChallenge. This is especially useful if you are one to always buy new items, whether they are essential or not. Kwaba is also about to launch a savings challenge to help conquer this.
Simply being disciplined will teach you how to save money. Saving money entails more than just putting it in your Kwaba account, but it’s a great start. When you keep to your budget, you’ll usually have some money left over at the end of each month.
Now that you know what the Diderot Effect is, you can use it to your advantage. Has it ever had an impact on you?
What did you buy without realizing it, and how did you get rid of it? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.