Some Purchases Simply Aren't Rational
It's a known economic principle that humans are by nature irrational creatures. Traditional economic theory used to base theories and principles on the assumption that we act in our own best interest; today we know this is not true. And so a new field has emerged known as behavioral economics, which emphasizes the differences between our expected behavior and our actual behavior. Personally, I find this to be very interesting because there are so many things that we purchase on a routine basis that are completely irrational.
I recognize that everyone in the world thinks that shiny rocks and minerals are the premier way of expressing love for someone, but in reality these things are just minerals. Diamonds, iron, gold, zinc, rubies and lead are all things that we dig out of the ground, but it just so happens that we pay thousands of dollars for diamonds, gold and rubies despite the fact that they serve no purpose. On the other hand, iron, zinc and lead have lower values per weight, but they are important to the functioning of our world; it just so happens that someone decided that shiny things should be status symbols. Diamond rings serve no function other than to put you into debt.
Desserts and Large Food Portions
"Would you like a large fry with that?" "Yes." NO! This is stupid! Nobody needs a large serving of french fries, diet soda or any other food in America. In every single restaurant or food establishment that I have ever visited, the smallest size of any item on the menu has always been more than sufficient to adequately fill the stomach of any grown adult. It just so happens that many of us cannot resist ordering unnecessarily large portions, paying extra to fatten our waistlines.
It also happens to be completely irrational to purchase dessert. It is not possible to make an argument that dessert is healthy, ever. Yet many of us have dessert several nights each week. We reduce our wealth by spending money to make ourselves less healthy; some of us even spend hours a week at the gym paying more money to burn off the dessert. Stupid.
Have you ever met someone with a collection of Hummels? How about Beanie Babies or Nutcrackers? I am always baffled by people who collect strange things such as these because they truly serve no purpose whatsoever. These items tend to be expensive, delicate and take up lots of precious space in homes. I can say 100% that if you stop collecting these utterly useless items, your life will stay the same, except you will retain more of your wealth.