holding off (or how i handle instant gratification)

there was a study done recently about instant gratification and how it is related to the first letter of your last name. remember in grade school when you lined up to go to gym class by the first letter of your last name? my arch-nemesis nicole bibus was always first, and i was always stuck at the end.

this study found that people whose names started in the first part of the alphabet were better at waiting for things, while those who had end-of-alphabet names had real trouble with holding out. this doesn’t apply to married names, so any ladies who married up in the alphabet still have an issue if they were low-enders in their childhoods. i’ve talked to all my siblings about this and we all agree we have a real issue with instant gratification. we want stuff NOW.

this is such a complete 180 to our lifestyle growing up, however. we were poor as dirt and had a real reason to wait for things. if something still worked, there was no reason to throw it out or give it away for something new.

so you can imagine how these two polar opposites work against each other in my grown up life. there are things that i need RIGHT NOW and will buy, but other things i angst over (usually large purchases involving much money) until i come to a conclusion.

case in point: last year around this time i was waffling over whether or not to buy a new winter parka. i had a parka i’d bought from old navy in 2004; it was perfectly fine. it zipped up. it kept me warm. but at this point, it was too big and was 8 years old. not only that, i had the money to buy a new fancy coat. there was no reason NOT to buy the coat. but waffle i did, for about a month, before i finally caved and bought the coat.

on the other hand, i have no problem with impulse purchases when it comes to household items, books, things for nate, weird food, restaurant visits, etc. it seems to be only personal purchases i have a problem with – like buying full-price pants that fit me. i don’t get it.

all this to say, i’m having a weird time right now because 1. it’s coming up on christmastime, and i spend a lot of money at this time of year anyway 2. buying a house puts a real dent in the pocketbook and 3. i’ll need more new clothes soon if things keep going the way they’re going, which means i’ll have to come to grips with buying myself stuff that’s not from goodwill. :/

5 thoughts on “holding off (or how i handle instant gratification)

  1. oo ooo ooo! i wanna go shopping with you!!

    i really want to paint the rooms in my house. that means i want it done now. not 6 months from now when i can open the windows and air out the room while i’m painting, tomorrow. ugh. i have, however, gotten over the idea of paying full price for pants that fit. the pants won that battle.

      1. Jane

        and you wondered why i flipped out about the $100 silvers liz bought me?! really?? (not that i’m still sore about that-jeans shouldn’t cost more than my phone bill-ridiculous)

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