They say that it is one of the greatest problems of our generation.
Spending, shopping or whatever you decide to call it.
Do you blame us? where there are so many things to buy.
The more your income rises, the more you remind yourself of all the things you deserve.
There are people who their monthly salary is a peanut compared to what they spend. I don’t know how they manage to survive.
To some, it is a problem, to others, it means nothing. If you dare confront them about their spending habit, then, you are in big trouble with them.
They will remind you that they are in this world primarily to enjoy their lives. Every other thing is secondary.
It is a problem, something caused it, though we all think that we are in control of what we spend. But there are things pushing us to spend and they will not rest till everything in our pocket is gone.
1. Social Media.
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, WhatsApp, you name them. They have become a big part of our lives.
I can’t even imagine life without them.
On these platforms, you show off yourself. You show off the newest additions to your wardrobe, your escapes to the world.
You display your lavish birthday party.
Let me assure you, it is not your fault, it is the world we live in now.
If you don’t show off yourself and your loved ones, who will.
The problem is in how the actions of others affect you.
After being exposed to the lavish lifestyle of others, how do you react to it?
Are you able to control yourself or do you try your best to live up to them?
The truth is that we are all affected by it because, these days, most of the time the social media is where we learn what is fashionable and what is not.
Then, you want to wear that type of shoe or that gown.
Some even take it personally. They are very sure that that girl is always showing herself off just to intimidate them.
Well, we all live a fake life on social media, we are not what we are on social media.
Will you show off yourself with your worst cloth?
Will you show us images of you during rush hour fighting other people just to enter the Keke or the bus? Those who live in some part Lagos will understand this.
Or will you admit to us that just the other day, you couldn’t find hundred naira in your pocket so you have to trek the long distance back home?
Think of social media as a place where you go to keep up with friends, (which is what it is) not where you go to to look for new things to buy.
2. The Advertisers.
The advertisers are getting better every day.
You hear and see their subtle messages all around you. Online, on the streets, on TV, on the radio, virtually everywhere you go you see and hear them.
Even if you not fond of shopping, something will happen one day that will make you fall for those messages you hear every day.
Their research centers are getting better at finding out why we spend money. So they understand how you think and the ads they create will disarm that resistance you have built around shopping.
These days, there are better technologies, graphic designers and photographers, who help create telling images.
I responded to an online ad, it was a t-shirt. It looked really good. I ordered for it and could not wait for it to be delivered.
The first time I washed the t-shirt, almost half of its red colour was left in the water.
I sent an angry email to the online store and nothing was done. My hard earned money has been exchanged for the cheap article that was not worth half its price.
A lot of us have suffered a similar fate, some people even have worse stories than mine.
And every day, we are being inundated with these ads.
Every action of the media is to make you do one thing – come back for more.
They want you to come back and read their newspapers or magazines, they want you to be glued all day to your television set.
How do they achieve that?
They make you dream. They create all sorts of fantasies so you will come back for even more.
Cars, mansions, different lifestyles etc.
The more they show you, the more you dream, and the more you want to live that life of luxury.
The media wants more subscriptions, they want more viewers or readers, in showing you the luxuries of life, they are only doing their job of keeping the business alive.
It is left for you to decide what you want from them – vital information you need to make an everyday decision or to go for things that will not add value to your life.
Movies can make you spend. Especially when they are acted by your favourite celebrities. You think about what they wear, what they drive, the kind of food they eat and where they live.
They create a lot of fantasies in your head and you will want to live that life.
Those fantasies, of course, cost money. In order to live half of that life, you have to spend big time.
When you begin to think about the luxury life of your friends on social media, or before you respond to that ad, or before you fall prey to the media, ask yourself if you really need those things.
Decide if you have the money? Even if you have the money, ask yourself if it is worth all that money (of course it always going to be very expensive).
The choice is yours.
What has influenced your spending habit? Share in the comment section.