Why We Have A Hard Time Giving It Up

We seem to be conditioned to believe that it’s important to have a lot of stuff and that once we get too expensive our desires to buy become thwarted — a paradox of scarcity and abundance. Instead we should look inward. For example, instead of focusing on what we can’t have or cannot afford, ask yourself why you don’t believe you need it to get what you want.

Why We Have a Hard Time Giving It Up By Steve Marabolo One of my clients was a well-to-do entrepreneur who loved the “newness” of new technology, and loved that it was so easily accessible at a fraction of the cost — and who didn’t want to feel out of place with others. But she found the technology difficult to use on a daily basis when she went shopping for toiletries or for food, or to buy a new pair of shoes or a vacation home. After her initial excitement wore off, her desire to buy seemed to wane, until one day she found herself shopping every day. And the more she spent, the harder it became to resist “feeling like a victim.” This is just one of many examples of our “we feel bad when we do something” syndrome, in which we try to make others feel bad through our behavior, because it is more comfortable than taking responsibility for our own choices.

Why We Have a Hard Time Giving It Up By Stephen Wolfram As the world becomes more connected, more accessible, more digital and we become less tied to place, the desire for privacy grows stronger. And that is where the “fear of the unknown,” which is part of our survival instincts comes from.

Why We Have a Hard Time Giving It Up By Stephen Wolfram If we were an alien from another planet to an alien that looked like us, how could we possibly relate to them? In their world, it is hard to see anyone in the wild or in a crowded city, and they cannot relate to our technology. When our technology is new we want it to look “cool”. We go out of our way to buy the most interesting things, and we are fascinated by the possibilities of new technology and how it connects to other technologies such as TV or internet. However, if you were in their world from the very beginning, and were forced to spend every waking moment with their technology, or watched your television every moment for your whole life, this feeling of wonder about the possibilities would be replaced by a fear as soon as something appeared more complicated than our little mobile phone. As soon as you have a few choices, even if they could be made with our technology, the urge to choose is replaced with the more negative, yet “hard wired” fear of not finding good choices, or perhaps something so complex that it isn’t practical. To an alien from another planet with no knowledge of our technology, when we “choose” we may feel as if we are choosing to go off and see the world, not because we have a purpose, but simply because we are trying to have fun. As a result, in our quest for fun, we may feel that we are choosing to buy the latest and greatest consumer stuff in the most interesting and “cool” things — and when we can’t afford our latest and greatest, we feel that we “don’t want” it because it’s too much money, even though we are only trying to have fun. I remember having this exact feelings when I was young, with “fear of the unknown” that drove me to buy “new”, trendy things I could never afford for reasons of “coolness” rather than practicality.

Why We Have a Hard Time Giving It Up By Stephen Wolfram When I was young (with “fear of the unknown”) I would “want a new car”, which I could never afford, so I would buy a used one, thinking that if it was in good condition and it had some mileage, I might be able to afford it, even though in my head (as I am sure it did to the reader) I knew it wasn’t worth the extra money. Eventually, over time, I learned to think differently, though, and I stopped looking for all the reasons that “old” cars were “better” and just bought the car I wanted. It was then that I learned to evaluate “value” without the need for the “cool” factor (i.e. the latest thing).