To live is to want. . .or so it seems sometimes. Even if we have all of our basic needs met and then some, we still often find ourselves wanting things. If we give into this endless list of wants, we may find ourselves in financial trouble. Sure, if you’re in a tight financial position you can work more hours and make more money, but even more important, you should learn how to stop wanting things. There are several strategies you can use to find more contentment in your life.
Stay Away from Social Media
Television used to be the main source of unrealistic expectations, but now it’s social media. Too often social media makes us feel bad about our lives and our lifestyle. We are envious of the things other people have or buy or do. We feel pressure to keep up and spend as others do.
Social media rarely makes people feel more content about their lives. Stepping away from social media is difficult, but you’ll be much happier with your own life and situation if you aren’t constantly bombarding yourself with social media images of a curated life.
Keep a Gratitude Journal
This might sound trite, but keeping a gratitude journal can truly help you appreciate all that you do have in your life. When you see, day after day as you keep the journal, all the things you already have, you feel less desire to buy more.
If you’ve never kept a gratitude journal before, you may not believe that it makes a difference in your life. However, it does. As you write every day what you have to be grateful for, you start finding more and more to be grateful for. Keeping this journal truly does change your mindset.
Recognize Advertising Tactics
Advertisers are in the business of getting you to buy a product. After all, if they can’t get you to make a purchase, they can’t make money. If you’ve never done so before, take the time to learn the tactics that advertisers use to manipulate you into wanting their products.
Once you understand what advertisers are doing and why you feel the emotion and urge to buy something, you’ll be able to fight the urge.
Wait 48 Hours
One technique I’ve found to be particularly helpful when I want to buy something is to wait 48 hours before actually making the purchase. About 90% of the time, after 48 hours have passed, I no longer want the item.
Using this strategy can help you differentiate between an impulse buy versus something you truly want. If you still want this item after 48 hours, it likely isn’t an impulse buy but rather an item that you’ll likely find useful.
We have many more material items than our ancestors, and yet, we’re still not happy. That’s the problem with wanting—it’s endless. You’ll never have all that you want. Instead, utilize some of these strategies to be satisfied with what you already have.
My Question for You
What techniques have you used to stop wanting endlessly? Has this change in your behavior changed your outlook on life and your level on contentment?