We can get steak anytime, food anytime, transport, buy stuff, etc.
I'm appreciative of all these conveniences.
However, I realize that these conveniences makes us lazy.
Lazy to think of alternatives. Lazy to put in just a bit more effort.
I tend to challenge myself constantly. To find better/cheaper ways to do things.
An example is, I love steak.
I used to like going to Lawry's for birthday celebrations.
This results in a cost of around SGD120 for 2 pax.
Not very expensive for a birthday lunch or dinner for around 500gm of good ribeye steak.
So I asked myself. Do I like Lawry's steak or do I like steak?
Will I enjoy cheaper steak? Or do I really love Lawry's style of preparing the meat?
So I went to Giant hypermart to buy 500gm of ribeye at SGD5/100gm.
Which results in SGD25 for the same quantity of meat.
I cooked it myself at home.
The result. The meat wasn't as tasty. No side dishes, no salads, no waiter.
But still good meat.
Was I happy with the meal. Hell yea!
I saved around SGD100 for the both of us, the meat was cooked quite well.
Not as much oil or salt was used.
Hey it was a great alternative.
So my conclusion for this is.
Yes I still like Lawry's steak. But preparing my own steak is not a bad alternative considering the cost savings.
In terms of happiness, the happiness I gained by saving SGD100 for a steak meal was more than the loss of happiness which I lost from the not as nice steak. I would say that I lost 20% happiness from the not as nice steak, but gained 100% happiness for the savings.
Similarly, when buying clothes, shoes, whatever. It is very easy for us to go into a shop and just buy whatever we want or need. I tend to challenge myself a bit. If I'm not in a rush to get the item, I tend to ask myself. When I see the item at a retail shop, I tell myself, "Ok now I know that I can easily get this item at XXX price, let's see if I can find it at 20% cheaper.". Then I go and hunt for the item or a similar item which I might be able to get for cheaper. Maybe I won't get as good a quality but I might be able to get it for cheaper. If I'm not too fussy about the quality of that product, I may get the cheaper item. If the quality is important, I hunt around a bit longer.
Eventually, I may or may not be successful to find a cheaper alternative which will suit my needs.
The point I'm trying to highlight is. Just try. Many of us are so used to just buy stuff. Why bother to look for something cheaper. It's only SGD10 how much cheaper can it be? Or it's only SGD5 cheaper online. I might as well get it now. The thing about this is habit. Once this becomes a habit, of just buying stuff immediately, you lose out the opportunity of savings. In the long run, these savings add up to 10-20% which is like you are making returns of the same amount in your investments.
Also, hunting for the product also delays the purchase. Same as my previous post of delaying purchases for a month. Which forces you to make products last one month longer whilst you hunt for a better deal.
Of course if the shoe is already broken or something is really unusable, just buy a new one. What I'm trying to bring to readers attention is:
1) Just try hunting for a better deal even though it's not a lot cheaper. The small amounts add up.
2) Make it a habit, else the getting used to convenience will become the habit
3) The net result may make you happier than the convenience of buying the item straight out.