How Many Hours of Work Did That Hamburger Cost You?
Whether this is the first article you have read on this site or the one-hundredth, you are here because you realize that your financial plan is something that needs to be individualized. This is especially true for budgeting, and more specifically for keeping your expenses low. Today I want to present you all with a quick tip that my good friend uses, and I think it is genius, to say the least.
This person loves to spend money, and at one point he had the same mentality that a lot of us used to have (“used to” being the key words here). As soon as we saw the money in our bank account, it was time to spend it. This habit, as we all know, can be an endless cycle of joy and sadness. However, my friend did take steps to become better with his money but it just seemed like nothing worked, until he started doing this:
Whenever he would buy something, whether it was a cheeseburger or a new pair of shoes, he would figure out in his head how many hours he would have to work to afford it. That’s it. Literally that simple.
Here’s how it works: let’s say you want a new outfit that will cost you $50. Well, if you make $15 per hour, then you would know you have to work over 3 hours to be able to buy it. Whether this is worth it or not is completely up to you, but as you may guess, many times it is not.
Another example to show you just how easy it is to think about this: you make $10 per hour and that new video game that just came out costs $60. This means you would have to work 6 hours just to afford it.
This method is not meant to scare you off from buying the things you want, but rather to make you reconsider how badly you really want them. One of the biggest benefits I see coming from this strategy is the practice of delayed satisfaction. We all want things immediately, but when we delay getting those things the truth of how much we really want them will reveal itself. This, in turn, will lead to smarter spending decisions.
All in all, this is just another method you can add to your financial tool belt.
If you like the article or have any other suggestions on things you do mentally when making spending decisions, comment them below!