Our need for things

Have you ever talked yourself into buying something because you’re convinced you need it, then when you’ve got it find it’s not what it was cracked up to be?

If I was told I had to choose between two cars I would choose the one I liked, but if someone told me to make my own choice I would walk away from both. It’s not something I need to have. I never knew how to explore these feelings in any great depth as a small child, but looking back it’s how I still do things.

Although it’s nice to have lovely things in our lives, those things shouldn’t define our personalities and who we are, but for some it changes exactly who we are. Instead of looking inside of us, at what brings us the most peace or makes us happier, we tend to look outside at what we think will make us feel happier.

Unfortunately, cars and possessions don’t replace how we feel about ourselves or other people. Our worldly possessions don’t turn bad moods into good; all they do is fill a void on what we think is missing. If we sort our lives out so that we began to feel more at peace within ourselves, we wouldn’t have this need for things.

We tend to justify and give ourselves reasons for why we need to buy things, instead of giving ourselves reasons why we shouldn’t. Retail therapy can only add to more frustration, because we won’t always know why what we buy doesn’t make us feel any better. Perhaps we need to deal with ourselves first, clear the decks on our baggage, then decide.

4 Aug, 2013

6 thoughts on “Our need for things

  1. I totally agree. Buying things may help at the time, but once we have it we are still in a foul mood. We do need to deal with the real problem.

    I used to impulse buy, now if I see something I want I let it go for a week or two and then see if I still want it. Usually I won’t buy it because I’ve given myself time to deal with the real issue.

    We can’t take it with us as the saying goes and buying stuff leads to clutter which causes problems in itself.
    Another thought, does the thing you want meet a certain necessary need? Will it provide a roof over your head, food, or other need?

    If not the best thing to do is to wait before buying and see if the problem you’re facing will resolve without buying something.

    1. Dealing with the real issue is key Lisa, you’re absolutely right. The majority of us will ignore their emotional needs to be replaced with buying things. I’m sure it’s very common.

      Unfortunately unless we deal with our emotional needs first, we’ll never be happy with what we buy. Buying something that will enhance our lives isn’t the same thing as buying something for the sake of having it.

  2. I live in a community environment where materialism defines people in a sense. It’s really sad because people actually believe stuff will enhance their lot in life or make them more desirable people.

    I just bought a new car a couple of weeks ago. My old car stayed on a tow truck more than it did on the road. I bought this car completely out of necessity, not for status or bling.

    I find peace in the simple things in life.

    1. Thanks Tim. I think we all live to some extent in those kind of communities. It seems to have become the norm. I have it too, but don’t buy into that life. If something we have is going to cost us more then it makes sense to buy a replacement as you have eloquently explained.

      Like you Tim I also find peace in the simple things. It’s a good way to be.

  3. Like Tim I live in a community where people will always look at what you have and what you don’t have and make a judgement on the person behind the ‘stuff’.

    I absolutely hate that and look forward to a time when we live elsewhere. I dislike the people and that in turn has made me dislike the place.

    I also look forward to decluttering my own life and I think that moving away will help with that too.

    1. Moving away from the community with this kind of behaviour will definitely help with some of the issues you write about here, but the skill will always be to emotionally get rid of the clutter that comes with your lifestyle and community.

      As a general rule I tend to get on with my life without so much worrying what others think about me or my family. It’s not always easy to know how to do that, but once you’ve mastered it, you’ll feel so much more at ease.

      Then moving will be the icing on your cake.

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