Cold, calculated consumption

Reduced to its simplest form, our financial lives contain two paths. To buy or not to buy.

That is the question (I want to briefly consider today).

Behind every calculation, every financial decision and every output from that big old spreadsheet is a human being who has aspirations, hopes and dreams.

Generally speaking, we are emotive beings.

All of us has made a whim decision at some point in their life. Big or small with large or tiny consequences, we’ve all done it. Just the other day I decided I desperately craved some crumpets for lunch and specifically made a trip to Sainsburys to get some.


I employed the tactic of cold, calculated consumption to my purchase and scanned the aisles for any that were reduced, part of a special buy offer (that actually would save me money) or otherwise a fair price.

I found a pack of 8 for 60p and was pretty pleased with that. They weren’t the ‘Warburtons’ brand, which was 40p more expensive for just 6 crumpets, so I was curious to see how they would fare up. FYI it turns out there is zero difference in deliciousness between the two of them.

By pausing to think before committing, we control our whim decisions.

To some people, the difference between spending 60p or £1 will seem hardly worth thinking about (though I’d like to point out that if you made this saving once a week and consistently invested the saving you’d have a pot of around £2,000 in 30 years!). To some extent, I do agree. But it is the philosophy that we are focussing on here.

Making the little and often search for value into an automated habit opposed to a conscious chore will not only transform your approach to your finances but to your happiness too.

With that in mind…

Remember that money is but a tool to fuel your happiness. Some allowance should always be budgeted to be spent as/when/how you like… Just ensure to retain control over even the whim decisions and you’ll thank yourself for it later down the line.


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