Selling Your Soul for $40

The psychology of buying stuff is weird.

And by "weird" I mean completely irrational.

Here's why:

Instead of filling up the gas tank at the most convenient gas station along one's commute and paying $2.75/gallon, many Americans would prefer to drive 8 miles out of their way to buy gas for $2.69/gallon.

Depending on the mileage their car gets, said person may save $1.06 on their gas bill while simultaneously spending 30 minutes of their time and $2.18 on gas to drive there and back.

Perhaps more ironic is that this person will then brag to their friends and family how they found the cheapest gas in town.

The same psychology applies to Black Friday and other such frenzy-driven marketing gimmicks.

The ads are already bombarding our brains with how we can save $10, $20, or even $100; and all we need to do is obsess over it and lose sleep and compete with 47,000,000 other people who want the same thing.

That's all.

And if a person is fortunate enough to acquire such a "steal," he/she will gloat all throughout the holidays about how they cheated the system and put a dent in Best Buy's holiday profits.

Yeah, okay, I'm being facetious. Sure.

I'm not against shopping and good deals.

If you like Black Friday, we can still be friends (as long as you accept that I'll make fun of you from time to time).

But on a more serious note, do you see the irony in the fact that our society has taken the one holiday solely dedicated to gratitude and thankfulness and allowed it to become the national holiday of "wanting more."

I'm talking to myself here.

I've been that guy who drove across town for cheaper gas.

I've been that person in line at 1 am on Friday after Thanksgiving.

And I think my life is better now because I'm not that guy anymore.

In twenty years, you will look back on 2014 and value the moments you had with your family and friends. You will cherish the photos you took, the stories you shared, and the smiles you exchanged.

And that TV or smartphone will be outdated garbage.

To conclude, let me be clear that I'm not judging anyone or trying to make anyone feel bad. If you enjoy holiday shopping and staying up all night, that's fine with me. 

But I would add a word of caution (to you and me): Keep your priorities straight...

1. God

2. People

3. Stuff

Don't be tricked into placing #3 in the #1 or 2 spot.

Image credit:
Shopping photos from

1 comment:

  1. Good read, Dan. I've only been shopping once on Black Friday. I just don't get all the hype of dealing with all the crazies to get stuff.