Monday, December 31, 2007

Resolve to think again

With New Years Eve now upon us, there is much talk about New Year's Resolutions. From losing weight to taking more risks, you hear a wide variety of intentions for the new year. I've never been one to really vocalize a resolution; after all, if I say it aloud then everyone will know whether I failed or not. And that's never fun. Chalk it up to being an overachiever.

But this year I resolve to continue a couple of things that I recently started:

  1. Continue to save, save, save! $600+ a month
  2. Stop and THINK before each non-essential purchase
Resolution number 2 is a really new one. Like, "just started yesterday" new. You see, there are these pillow shams I've wanted for a while now, and just yesterday I saw that they'd gone on sale. I congratulated myself on having had the self control to wait and not buy them at full price. Yeah, Kelly! Surely now I could justify purchasing them on sale. I grabbed my debit card and went to the website prepared to make my purchase.

And then I stopped. And thought.

At the sale price I would spend just over $100 for the four pillows I'd need. Not an unreasonable price for new shams, one could argue, especially considering full price would have been almost $300. But in my thinking I thought about that beautiful new camera I want (and all the beautiful pictures I long to take!) and the little amounts of money I'm stashing away for it week by week. And so I asked myself, if it came down to it, would I rather have new pillow shams or the camera? The camera, being a much larger purchase requires great patience and the promise of delayed gratification. Unfortunately, if you haven't already discovered this, delayed gratification stinks. I'm so used to buying what I want, when I want (within reason, of course) that the wait feels positively torturous.

And so I closed the website and put my debit card away. No new bed pillows for me.

So surely now I can justify putting an extra unplanned $100 toward my camera fund as a reward for my noble and responsible restraint...Right...Right?

What are your New Year's Resolutions?


Jeremy said...

I shouldnt have opened my big mouth. I missed my connection flight home (thanks air traffic controller error), and am stuck in the denver airport for 4 hours. Are you sure you dont want me to get a cab out to the university? :) Happy New Year to you Kelly. I'm sure it will be a great '08.


TheWinnFamily said...

um...the typical loose some weight...and I'd like to learn how to use my new camera...well. :)

Abby... the Oregonian said...

kelly, i am proud of you for restraining yourself. your words make me ponder what part of me i want to make better this year...

b said...

And some of the best advice I ever got about contemplating a financial decision--ask yourself this: "What is it that I want most of all?" (Answers could be, for example, 'to be debt-free!', 'to have an emergency saving' 'to be financially free!'

Then, you ask yourself about the thing you are considering buying: "do I want this thing more than I want X (the above most of all thing)? Or do I just want this thing now?" Because more often than not, the thing you want now is not the thing you want most of all. And buying the thing you want now (because there will certainly be another thing you want 'now' tomorrow) may even keep you, over and over, from gaining the thing you want MOST OF ALL.

My resolves: practice becoming a better listener, worry less about what other people think, and practice appreciating the beauty of the present moment.

Phoebe said...

Good for you Kelly. My resolution is to become more like YOU!