There is a belief that soon after a person develops the habit or purchasing stuff he or she doesn’t need, he or she will be forced to put on the market the things that he or she does need.
We know this to be true from experience. But there is actual, empirical proof.
We cannot find happiness inside a shopping bag.
We may be on a constant lookout for that ever elusive source of happiness, and we may attain what we think it is in material things. It’s never permanent though. Most of the time it only lasts a few days. There is even a term for this. We know of it as retail therapy.
A lot of reasons exist as to why purchasing things won’t give us true happiness. Here are nine of them.
1.They don’t stay new forever.
A lot of, if not ALL, the things you buy are never permanent. They appear bright and tempting when you first see them being sold. But once you take them out of their
original packaging, they start to lose their glimmer.
2.There will always be a newer, better version coming out soon.
As far as model and style go, your purchase won’t be the last one, and it certainly won’t be the best one. There will always be something to improve on. There will always be a new feature to be added. Think of a car. Think of the latest phone. Think of the latest laptop. Everything in the universe moves on. That includes the stuff we buy which w
ill be obsolete in time.
3.Material things make us worry.
All the new things that we buy can be destroyed or stolen. And we know it. The more expensive the object, the more we think about the negative things that can happen to it.
4.The stuff we buy needs to be maintained.
They need our time and our attention. They need cleaning, organizing and managing. What happens is we are too distracted by these objects that we ignore the things that matter, the things that truly make us happy.
5.We spend more on what we buy than we know.
Sure, we shell out our hard-earned cash for something we desire, and we spend more of
our time on it. So as you can see, it’s not a simple exchange. It’s money and time that we spend, for a material object.
6.Sometimes we hope that the things we buy will impress people.
That’s why we brag about them, whether intentionally or unintentionally. But a
majority of the time, they are not as impressive as we hope they would be. They may notice our new stuff, but they’re also looking for a way to talk to you about their own purchases.
7.There will always be people who have more than you do.
Some people make the mistake of thinking that if material objects are the basis of being happy, then those with more material objects are more ecstatic with their lives. This is a cycle that will never be broken.
8.We will never be content or satisfied when we shop.
Look at the cabinets we have at home. Most of us have cabinets that can barely contain the clothes we buy. Do you know why? Because it is never enough.
9.An experience is a better source of happinessthan the stuff available at the mall.
Most studies conclude that there are better paths towards being happy. One of these paths run directly through life-altering events.
A spiritualist named Advashanti believes that after buying stuff, we are happy, not because we obtained the object of our desire through monetary means, but rather because for a moment there, we fed into our hunger and stopped to want. And in stopping to want, we find peace. And in finding peace, we are happy. This is his hypothesis on why being happy when making a purchase is never permanent.
This is very wise when we make purchases. And I have shared this with a lot of people I have talked to. And this naturally leads to the decision that we have to limit our desire for material things, this will lead us to stop wanting.
But this is not enough.
Being a minimalist doesn’t translate to being a person who has completely eliminated his desire for material objects. Elimination is not the answer.Redirection is.
If I can point my desires towards more significant goals such as love, justice, and redemption I should be okay. I should be able to go after these goals with all that I have because I know how important they are. However, we as a people, are materialistic beings. We settle for things that are not permanent. We are better than this. We should be better than this. There are greater things in life than what can be bought in a department store.
Change your outlook. Go find the right things in the right places. They are waiting for you.