I went to Elante Mall with my wife for dinner. We were waiting for our family friends to join, there was great rush, good happening crowd, music, balloons, decoration, festive atmosphere all around. We also felt like doing some window shopping for time pass. My wife suddenly slipped into Apple showroom and I just followed her. We started checking the new iPad Mini, Mac book and suddenly my wife saw this new I Phone 6. What is so special about iphone 6? My wife asked me curiously. She said everybody in her office is just talking about iphone 6, internet websites, all newspapers, television, magazines everywhere. The sales guy started telling her the difference between the Samsung and Apple as brand and added features, apps etc. I had once talked to her about changing my phone, but today my wife persuaded me to purchase Phone worth Rs.60000/-. She said it suits your personality. I was not ready, I said it is too costly for me. The sales person intervened and gave me 0% installment offer for one year @ Rs.5000/-. Now it seemed very affordable. But I had no cash. Sales person had the answer – credit card machine. So I finally came out with iphone 6. I am the same person who used to discuss why do people need cell phone of Rs.60000/- when you get the same features in Micromax/ Samsung at much lesser a cost.
I reached home and I started analyzing how circumstances persuaded me so much. I had a few learnings:
1. Festive Atmosphere: Malls/ Shopkeepers create atmosphere like festive season all year round that you feel like spending/ shopping. During the Diwali month normally every family witnesses increase in shopping bill.
2. Installment Option: Purchase on installments make the monthly outgo so small that suddenly big expenditure become affordable. It can be offer for change of Car/ LCD/ Fridge/ Ac etc.
3. Purchase through plastic money. I realized there was no pain even though I purchased such expensive phone (which a few days back I used to consider as complete wastage of money). When we pay cash, we feel the pain.
4. Going to Malls for Dinner. I wonder why we went to Elante Mall for dinner when same restaurant or better ones are available outside. I need not to even waste time for parking there.
5. We need to explore Hobbies for Relaxation: As per my prior experience, we sometimes go to Malls for time pass, but at end what happens – spending and shopping. I feel all the shops in Mall are like slip fielders persuading us to make one mistake and they will catch out us. Shops are so attractively decorated, mannequins have such beautiful dresses that you can’t resist going inside. And once you go inside they have enough attractive offers like 1 free with every two items, Coupon of Rs.1000/- free on purchase of Rs.5000/- etc. Instead you can go to gardens, lakes, jogging, yoga, gym for relaxation and enjoyment. We should pursue our hobbies like gardening, learning music, meditation etc.
I recently went to a Psychiatric doctor for session on financial planning and while waiting I was reading symptoms of depression displayed there. I was shocked to see that excessive urge for shopping is also one of the symptom. Here, I am not saying that we should not go shopping, but we should shop judiciously and save ourselves from becoming “MTV Bakra” at the hands of shopkeepers.