My spending on Amazon between 2007-2013 was on average only £41 per year, fast forward to 2016 and I had spent a little over £1,300 with amazon. I had gone from 3/4 transactions a year to 63 transactions in 2016. This wasn’t a gradual increase either as you can see from the graph, this was a vertical leap.
What happened over the course of 2015 / 2016 to explain this incredible change in behaviour? Then I realised that somewhere in 2015:
- I had installed the amazon app onto my phone
- Started browsing through that app as a pass time
- My brother shared his prime delivery with me
- Black Friday and amazon deals exploded/came about
I had subconsciously given myself a life sentence. As someone who hates and avoids shopping in stores at all costs, overnight I had become (by my standards) a digital shopaholic. I was buying sh*t I didn’t need because I could do it easily from my house and have it delivered the next day. It used to be that I’d place an order and over the next few days excitedly come home and check my post but with the addition of Amazon Prime and the increased frequency at which I was buying, the excitement of checking my post had completely gone. I was numb to the experience of shopping online. It was no longer a treat but a bad habit I never knew I had.
I whole heartedly believe that I grew up in a society of instant gratification, which is OK, every generation has that by comparison to their previous generation. The issue facing ours is that feeling of gratification is getting shorter and shorter to the point where it doesn’t exist, where we need more and more hits to feel an ever decreasing high. I was/am neck deep into this materialistic lifestyle but armed with this new financial awakening I will now be second and third guessing any purchases that I make and if they don’t add any value to my life, I will not be adding to cart! It won’t be easy as the act of consumerism is deeply ingrained into our DNA but with this realisation, hopefully I can break out of this prison starting with the deletion of the Amazon app and move towards a life of minimalism. In the process, I’ll have hopefully saved enough to recover what started all of this.
Without sounding “preachy” I encourage everyone reading this post to take a step back and look at their life through the eyes of their bank account. You may be unpleasantly surprised.
That reminds me, Amazon has a great offer on a Playstation 4…