Instagram, whatsapp, snapchat, facebook, Linkedin, twitter… we are part of so many platforms, and we are active on all or most of it, either on laptop or phone.  If you are working, then your office server may have firewalls so you don’t access it there, but then you use it on the phone.  Every one of these platforms have Ads or is selling something or other to you. Added to that the moment you visit an ecommerce website, the products start chasing you. It does not go away from your eyesight, teasing you, tantalising you to buy it. If all their efforts fail, they then offer discount to tempt you to buy. This relentless pursuit goes on for a long time.

So how do we react to this to onslaught? We start by first ignoring it, then when it keeps popping up, you click on those ads, window shop for a while, hold on to your resistance, you click out of it. A few days later, the advertisements don’t go away, this time they come back with an attractive discount, so you click again, this goes on till your resolve slowly starts melting and you end buying it.

Do we really need so many clothes, bags, shoes, jewellery and the list goes on.

Social media is one of the biggest reason for this excessive buying. The pressure to post your best looking picture constantly weighs on your mind. Every picture needs to look perfect, your clothes, make up, hair, etc, everything needs to look good. Every outing be it a restaurant or holiday, or even a play, it has be Instagram/Facebook worthy.

The number of likes and comments for the pictures is what is being constantly discussed by the youngsters. I remember in my last salon visit, I saw this young kid getting all dolled up, it was for a wedding and she and her friend were as usual were giggling and chatting. I overheard the young girl say’ I just want my pictures to look good on Instagram’.

This kind of constant ratification can get addictive and is extremely harmful for your emotional balance, not to mention your financial well being. You are not likely to have bottomless pit of finances for this kind of meaningless and needless purchases. This kind of buying can lead to low savings and empty coffers.

So here’s a warning to all the youngsters who are working…

I read an article that said, Millennial’s may have the ability to buy Rs 16 lac crore worth of goods and services online by 2020, according to Morgan Stanley.

If that be the case, you can be sure that there will be more and more online advertisements coming your way online, brands are going to chase you relentlessly. You run a high risk of falling for the temptations again and again.

How do you avoid this trap?

Before buying any product, ask yourself – Do I really need it now? Can it wait? Put it in the shopping cart and leave it. See how you feel about it after a few days. If you still feel the need to buy and then fine, else it will automatically drop out of your mind.

Have a budget. Before even putting it in the shopping cart, ask yourself – Can I afford it? Is it within my budget? If no, drop it immediately and move on. You can always come back to later.

Decide to buy only for occasions and not in between.

Not having your credit card within your reach could also help.

I know all of this will require will power but if you continue this buying spree, you will end up with a pile of stuff you don’t need and of course empty pockets!