|As I was headed to play tennis yesterday, I realized I had forgotten water. Oops. I popped in a convenience store to handle that.
A teeange woman of color was in line ahead of me. She pointed at the pack of cigarettes she wanted. She picked the pretty box with pastel blue and pink swirly design.
The main behind the counter said, “8 dollars, 51 cents”.
There was this pregnant pause where all 3 of us seemed to look at that little box on the counter at the same time.
It seemed like she might pull out in time, but then the, “everybody’s doin’ it” voice seemed to snatch her mind back. She said, “really??” in that obnoxious meme way that’s going around and rolled her eyes at the guy behind the counter as if he was forcing her to buy them. She bought them and walked out. She looked, and I felt, deflated and defeated.
Now, I’ve spent way more than that on feeding my own addictions. So I don’t have a leg to stand on about judging that part of the issue.
The part that I did notice as universally relevant for all of us, is that SHE HAD A CHANCE TO CHANGE HER MIND. It is not too late to change your mind, even if that item is sitting on the counter and there is someone behind you in line!
I especially recommend putting some helpful tools in place as the holidays come up.
Before you wander in stores, unattended like a loaded gun, you could:
- review your agreement with yourself or your partner about the maximum you will spend during that trip
- make a list of things you are choosing to buy and only purchase from the list, not from impulse
- call or text a friend (ideally someone who supports you being financially healthy, and not someone who subscribes to that, ‘everybody’s doin’ it’ voice) before AND after your shoppin adventure
Remember, YOU are in charge of your spending! Nothing is inevitable in this domain, other than that truism about death and taxes.