Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Treat Yo'self

The above captioned phrase has become quite verbatim in our house. We use it seriously, as a joke, when we're mad, sad, ecstatic, the whole nine yards. We like it so much that we wrote it on a dollar and hung it on the ceiling at a restaurant on Cabbage Key island this past December.
if you already know our last names, great! if not, the mystery continues...
But in order to better understand the science behind "Treat Yo'self/Yourself", we need to watch a little clip, courtesy of Parks & Recreation (seriously, if you're not watching this show, you need to stop reading this blog until you're caught up -- the references aren't going to stop here):

How about one more for good measure? I want to make sure you're fully immersed in the concept:

Ever since this episode came out, I feel like every advertiser is using this phrase in some form. I would be foolish to think the "go on, you deserve it" campaign is a new strategy, when in fact, it's probably one of the oldest tricks in the advertising book. What I didn't realize was how much of a hold it had on me until this past weekend when I was out at the shops (read more about that here).

I started to think to myself: "Self...you've been really good lately. You haven't used your credit card in one month! What's the harm in buying one dinner/shirt/drink/hair product/etc?" Let me tell you, it is a slippery slope back into debt when you start thinking that way.

Even though Lent is almost over, I know my financial journey is still just beginning, especially with this epiphany of sorts. I still have to overcome this almost primal desire to buy and consume. I have to make myself take a step back when there's an item in my hand and ask "Self... why are you buying this drink/shirt/hair product/snack? Are you really thirsty/naked/hungry or do you just want this item for the sake of having it?" Although identifying wants versus needs was an integral component in my rules, I have a bad habit of justifying my purchases instead of admitting I made a mistake by buying it.

I think it's a step in the right direction to be able to identify when I'm using the "treat yo'self" mentality. Hopefully, this will help curb future spending!

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