My husband was recently talking to me about a concept he and some guys at work have been discussing lately, the power of no. It got me thinking...
The other day, I was at Big Lots looking for something. I can't remember specifically what I was looking for, but I wanted to see if they carried the item I wanted. As I walked through the store, I stopped and looked at several other items that I liked/wanted. In fact, I nearly bought a few of them. But, I refrained and ended up leaving the store without buying anything. As I was walking out, one of the clerks said, "You're not getting anything?" The way she said it was full of surprise, like she had never seen anything so crazy in her entire life. I simply smiled at her and said, "Not today." As I was walking out to the car, I wondered how strange that must have seemed to her. In this culture, we can hardly go anywhere anymore without buying more stuff (most of which, we don't need). That's kind of sad.
As many of you know, Fraser and I have been maintaining a tight budget over the past year and half as we are working towards becoming debt free. Well, one of the things this has done has made me think twice (sometimes even 3 times)whenever I am shopping about whether or not we really need the item, or is it simply a want?
When I was at Big Lots, there were several items I wanted (really badly, in fact). They are things that would be nice to have, but they are not necessities at this point. I could have EASILY spent $100 on these items and walked out with a full cart and an empty wallet. But, I chose not to. I made the conscious decision to not buy anything on impulse, and you know what? It has worked really well for me/us.
I guess I just found it interesting that it was such a shock for that clerk to see someone acting out of self-control. Now, I would be lying if I said it was easy or fun to have to be so careful about how we spend our pennies. Let's be honest, it's not. But, I know that we are learning valuable lessons and I like to think that Nathan is picking up on these lessons, too.
The word "no" is powerful, indeed. But, it doesn't have to be a negative word. For me, right now, that power of "no" means that I can have enough money to pay for food and things we need, while living within our means and paying down debt. I like to think that I have learned to wield the power of that word (at least in this area). Have you?
- ▼ 2010 (9)