Membership Card, A Promotion Trap

When you thought about buying a membership card, are you benefitted?

“Hey, do you want the limited edition membership card? You will get points and a 15% discount for every single purchase”. It’s prevalent to encounter these offers in a shopping center. It is very tempting, isn’t it? You may relate to it when you visit your favorite outlet frequently. For example, when you are visiting a shopping mall.

By owning a membership card, you may get the privilege to obtain a limited edition item, that sometimes only limited to member. On the other hand, one could get a first-hand discount from your favorite outlet or restaurant. However, is it beneficial to have one to have a membership card?

Ok, I need to talk about why it is not beneficial first. Generally, in my opinion, a membership card will have two disadvantages. First, if you need to pay a subscription fee for the membership card, you need to spend more to get back the subscription fee. Another phenomenon is practically infeasible to perform activities more than the subscription fee value.

Gym membership and bookstore membership card are two of the most common example. There is an annual subscription for both memberships. One likely to feel that one will be more frequent to visit either one of them. However, particularly for the gym, it is too early and eager to make a decision when one has not fully committed.

Secondly, for some of the membership that gives free points, some airlines or department store. There is a benefit of this type of membership card. The user does not require to commit oneself frequently to own a membership card. However, it will induce one having a sense of belonging to the product itself, which led one to ignore other products and options.

In the end, it’s totally fine to have a membership card. It depends on the user for how to use it. However, it is important to be rational before one has decided to purchase a membership card. One way is to check whether one has spent the money regularly on the store or not within six months. If yes, then it is reasonable to own a membership card.

“Think wisely and rationally before one has committed to an apparent benefit.”

What kind of membership card do you own? Is it worth it?

Tolerance and Adaptation

When you have encountered different opinions, are you going to have faith in your belief or try to accept them?

Differences, a word that describes a disagreement and dissimilarity, is what makes everyone has different opinions. Every day we have encountered differences among people that generates various points of view. Therefore, what action is needed when one disagrees because of various point of view?

Everyone has different actions after an event, while everyone was raised in various backgrounds and reacts based on previous experience. One could infer the mindset of a person based on the reaction. Therefore, what is a parameter to understand a person’s mindset?

When encountered a difference, everyone wants to prove their views are correct. Eventually, an argument will start among the parties. After several debates, it will lead to a conclusion. Both parties subconsciously will know who has the most reasonable point of view.

After the argument, having a better viewpoint is very important for both parties. The new perspective is an essential element for one to grow. With a broader perspective, one could think and consider more things before deciding on an action. By accepting a view, one could easier understand other people and have better communication skill.

In a sense, accepting other inputs is also makes one more open. To ask oneself whether one is open-minded or not, one will most likely answer yes. However, a close-minded person will not realize that one is close-minded. Therefore, the adaptability of oneself from different opinion can be used as an indication to check openness.

To sum up, it is undeniable that one will have a difference between one another. Therefore, to be open is important and essential to other people. By listening to other people, one will tend to be more open-minded. By being open-minded, one could apply tolerance in daily life and could adapt well with other people.

Openness is an essential element for one to have a tolerance mindset and adaptable personality.

What kind of action can one do to make oneself more open-minded?

Probability and Luck

If you are dealing with uncertainty, you will make your decision based on probability or luck?

All of us have faced thousands of scenarios every day. As most events will be a routine, there are novel experiences that make every day feels new. Among these scenarios, there are several problems that we could not decide directly, because due to the uncertainty.

These uncertainties are solvable if one has experienced beforehand, which is called experience. On the other hand, there is many scenarios that one could only decide based on luck, such as whether today will rain or traffic jam

Other than these minor examples, major events could influence our lives. Few of them such as the career that we choose, the school that we attend, the friend that we talk. We could not have a choice to select what we want sometimes. However, there is a moment that we could choose what we want. If there is uncertainty, should one choose it based on probability or luck?

Probability, a term that shows how likely an event will occur, could be an approach to make a decision. It is relatively straightforward to apply probability in decision-making. However, there is a common problem of probability. People will try to put a higher chance for events that appear on them more often, although there is less chance to happen.

One may have a stigma that an airplane will have a higher accident compared to a car, although the airplane is safer. The main issue is the difficulty to give a proper judgement because of the stereotype and general misconception.

Luck, a success that brought by pure chance. Luck is wishes and overrated to other people. The main issue of making a decision based on luck is the overestimation of fortune. It results in several phenomena such as the overvaluation of the stock market and continuous operation of the lottery ticket.

One may argue that probability may be better than luck for making a decision. However, one needs to think carefully for some thinking fallacies from chance and fortune. By thinking and deciding carefully, one could tackle fallacies and have a better decision in the uncertainty.

“Think carefully for probability and luck before making a decision.”

What is the common fallacy of considering probability and luck in a decision?

High Salary and Happiness

Does a high salary guarantee people to be happy?

The improvement of the overall economy in the world is formed based on the overall increase in productivity . There is a high demand for professional workers with adequate pay. It will lead to a remarkable increase in the number of middle class. By the significant increment of the middle-class proportion, it will increase the overall prosperity of the society.

By the improvement of prosperity, some skilled workers will have their salary increase. One could buy the items one likes, have a lifestyle that one wishes. Moreover, one will be easier to accumulate wealth. The money that one gets will improve life quality in terms of physical needs. However, is it guarantee one to be happy?

A higher salary will mean to the higher working time to produce and maintain the same outcome. One could argue that some of the professional workers may not need to work in long working hours. The employee may be stressful because of the long working hours applied to them.

From the phenomenon, it may lead one does not have a work-life balance. Eventually, it may make one does not have time to reflect oneself and have adequate time to rest and enjoy life, which leads to chronic depression. It may be the reason of the high turnover rate of talents in some stressful industries.

Another argument is due to the long working hours. a worker may accumulate stresses during the work. It will form the consumerism behavior to relieve stress by purchasing unwanted items. On one side, consumerism behavior will drive the economic wheel of society. On the other side, a high salary will help the company owner to accumulate wealth.

From the above examples, one may think that having a high salary may not make one happy. However, one could counter some issues such as work-life balance and consumerism behavior and have a proper trade-off between salary and happiness. One could earn a high salary with and satisfying life.

In the end, a high salary may be a common way to achieve happiness based on a social stigma. However, if getting a high pay needs to sacrifice more than one needs, it does not make one to have a fulfillment. Therefore, the balance between work, behavior, and money is necessary for self-actualization, an ultimate form of happiness.

“Balancing work, behavior, and money will eventually lead to the gratefulness and fulfillment of life.”

How does one be able to balance between these components?

A Delayed Gratification

One’s nature on delaying what one enjoy for the sake of a better future?

Human are social creature that tend to pursue a better life. Most people want to have a better life. A person with a better life is indicated by a better living standard, higher social status, and self-actualization. People often regret and being sad because fail to achieve objectives. There are various objectives that one wishes to achieve.

Some people will enjoy themselves on the things that they own. Imagine that one could enjoy oneself in a magnificent house, proudly owning a brand new phone and car that makes other people envy. It is more often one is not only pursuing physical items. As an emotional creature, everyone has different emotional needs and wants.

Because of the different emotional needs and wants, one often wishes to be validated by peers and society. Moreover, the presence of social media exacerbates the thirst of validation. In this society, there is an increase of needs compared to our ancestors, In particular, there is a shift from merely physical to emotional needs.

For one to obtain the needs, a number of challenges that one will face. For one to become a professor, one needs to sacrifice resting times t focus on research. Becoming a businessman, one needs to work more than 9 hours to develop a company.

It contradicts with the human nature of enjoying life in various ways. For example, going to a club and have fun with friends, shopping to fulfill desire, and resting easily because of the difficulty of work. From the above examples, procrastination and gratification will become the two most serious obstacles. Therefore, one needs to have the strength to delay gratification. However, how could one delay gratification?

Keep accountable and not giving up are two solutions for one to delay gratification. Being accountable, it means that one has a responsibility for oneself. By not giving up, one is fighting oneself inner will to procrastinate. By applying these solutions, one will be better in delaying gratification and eventually will achieve a better objective in life.

Accountability and persistency are the two main components of delaying gratification.”

What is your method of delaying gratification?

An Imperfect Competition

What could one benefit from an imperfect competition?

In this competitive society, anything can be compared in various ways. To benefit in a competition, one needs to find a way and strive. The more general the field is, the more competitive it is. Therefore, one could consider to distinguish oneself in it.

What is a novel field? A field that is not general and less known by people. A novel field has several characteristics: the less information of the general public, the overvalue or undervalue of the field, and imperfect competition.

Less Information

Competing in a new field is challenging because of the less information given. People may ignore a novel field because of the unpopularity and the lack of observation and speculation, although one could benefit from it. One could develop skills and keep the information as secrets to be better in the new field.

Valuation of The New Field

As in this sophisticated world, to satisfy people ambition and future needs. these fields are growing at a remarkable pace. Some new fields were created in an unimaginable scale. For instances, renewable energy, blockchain, social media, and some hybrid industries.

Some fields are certainly more useful than another in some ways. However, because of the uneven publication and stereotype of the public. Therefore, it will lead to the overvaluation of particular industries. With the hope of striving in a novel field and secure a good position, more people are flocking. On the other hand, there are still numbers of undervalued industries that ignored by people.

Imperfect Competition

Due to the less information and popularity in the field, some people will gather information and start earlier than most people. Also, the pioneer will form the gameplay. Therefore, it will be beneficial for the pioneer in the novel field.

To sum up, a novel field may sound unfamiliar. One needs to take the courage to try up, and it may not bring a reward that one wishes. However, by proper speculation and gaining insight on future growth, a novel field may be easier to compete.

“An imperfect competition will support the growth of a novel field, which will eventually improve the overall society.”

Do you have any novel idea that is potentially to become a field in the future? If yes, what is it?

Popularity and Potential, A Career Selection

Some industries are developing faster, does the development is due to the popularity or the potential?

When one has just graduated from school, some do not have a picture of their career paths. When money has become a need, choosing a career with a high wage or a popular industry becomes a tempting factor, People may not know what is the working world before step into it.

It is challenging to finding a clear career direction unless one has passion and plan. Two main factors that will blindly affect career choice: potential and popularity, where these two factors are often intertwined. The potential and popularity have incentivized the industry with high growth rate and high wages. As a consequence, it centralizes the talent from all of the worlds to compete in the industry.

There is a consequences when one does not prepare thoroughly from dive to the career and distinguish oneself. One is likely to produce the same outcome compare to colleagues from the same industry. Moreover, one may feel miserable and could not enjoy what they do. Don’t you feel miserable by doing something that you are not good at, especially when you do it without passion?

Therefore, it is not wise to choose occupation based on popularity and potential. Moreover, one should not choose it because of social opinion. It is hard to decide what to choose as there are options. Then, what are the parameter that one should apply for career choosing?

As everyone has different personalities, some are exceptionally well in executing specific tasks. Some people are good at leading, while the others are meticulous. With a variety of traits, some occupations are more suitable for one than another. If one could choose a career that is suitable for oneself. It will indeed increase joy in the work and become more dedicated in finishing the task.

If one does not know what to choose, choosing a career that suits our strength is also a wise option. When one was in high school, some are strong in some subjects, some are strong at sports, while the others are strong at hands-on stuff. From there, it could be an indication for choosing a future career.

To sum up, potential and popularity should not be the only option to choose a career, especially when personality and strength align with it. There is no point of working long term in the thing that one does not enjoy. With the proper selection, one could work in the career one desires.

Personality and strength provide a clear direction for your career.”

What kind of strength and personality that suits your future career?

Discount, Save or Spent?

When you spend your cash because of a discount, does it save your money?

Every day we are spending cash for items that we want, regardless we need it or not. When choosing an option, one is excited by seeing the discount on the item, especially in major events such as Single’s Day and Black Friday. Some will feel incredibly satisfied when they purchase the item due to discounts and crazy offers.

Some are aiming and waiting for the great sale because they could buy items at a discounted price. Especially in this period, one could buy some electronic appliances, clothes, equipment, etc. However, the other is also just buying because of believing that it was cheap and affected by the advertisement.

By buying things in discount, one will have the illusion that one will save a lot of money. In fact, most of us will spend more than on a typical day. There are several reasons for the occurrence of this phenomenon. Firstly, the initial increment in the price before the discount . Secondly, the public stigma that in some celebration days that the thing is cheaper.

Of course, not all products sold in the celebration event are as expensive as a typical day. However, indeed some products are sold in even a dearer price at the celebration event. It is one of the marketing strategy of companies to sell their products.

For instance, to purchase shoes with a price of $100. In usual, there is a buy one get one promotion. On a celebration event, there is a 50% discount promotion. In the end, one will roughly spend the same amount of cash. Therefore, consumers couldn’t save significantly by purchasing a discounted product.

In the general situation, one could say that some do not even check the item price beforehand. On a great shopping event, one could visit a shop and buy some products. One believes that the products are cheaper than usual, just merely because of intense advertisement by companies.

The outcome of irresponsible shopping is a shopaholic habit that will repeat as a cycle. Moreover, the money that one gains from hard work spent ineffectively. To indicate whether you spend it responsibly or not, you may see whether is there is any hoarding of the unused item inside your house.

Proper research on the price before hand is recommended to counteract this issue. Moreover, writing in the note of the item that one is going to buy. One should write it inside the note because our mind will frequently change if there is any external temptation. If you spend your cash attentively, it will significantly improve your money control effectively. Together, we can save more to spend our hard-earned cash into meaningful things.

“Spending your saving wisely so you can spend it meaningfully.”

After you have checked your room/house, any action that could improve your spending habit?

Less Price or Better Quality?

Given that you have adequate money, will you choose better but expensive stuff or ordinary but cheaper stuff?

Currently, we are living in an era where we could buy almost anything in anytime. With convenience, one faces a myriad of option for purchasing things that one likes. With the countless option, one definitely has preferences on selecting which item to purchase. While multiple approaches are used for selecting products that result in different spending habits on people.

As a human tendency to enjoy a better life, a better item will apparently improve life quality. In terms of price and quality, expensive items usually will have better quality and vice versa. However, it does not apply to all things, such as luxury goods. These goods have little or no use, but to bring influence on the users social status.

However, not everyone has infinite cash to splurge and indulge. Conversely, most of us are only have an amount of fixed money from our salary that can be used to buy a finite amount of items for daily expenses. Hence, the cash that we spend on the goods we purchase will affect our life quality. Here comes a question, better to have fine goods that will cost more or save money by buying cheaper goods?

Wants vs Needs

Do you buy items because of your wants or your needs? There are a lot of unnecessary things that one purchases. Some have fallen into the illusion that by owning classy items will make yourself better, such as new clothes, phone, etc. However, the reality is the price that one pays is far less compared to the benefits gotten.

Some will blindly buy the brand new items because of the surroundings, and it will form habits. In other words, these people do not really know what they want, they are just following the crowds, with the fear to be excluded from their communities. If this situation happens, one will be struggling to determine whether it is a need or want.

Price-Function Comparison

Every day we face hundreds of products in various ways, where most products are known from advertisements. From advertisements, the products given are offered with benefits. It is very tempting to try the product, isn’t it?

It is OK to buy it if one could get the function and benefit with the money spend. Before one purchases the product, it is better to think about the benefit brought before the purchase. It is difficult for one to realize that one has analyzed thoroughly before any purchase. Therefore, one should engage a friend/family member to ask their opinion on whether the product is worth the price or not. But to take note, it’s useful when one asks the correct person.

Conclusion

It is totally up to you to buy a cheap thing or a good thing, as long as you has fulfilled your needs before your wants. Because when you blindly purchase for your wants before your needs, you will sacrifice your needs in the future. Moreover, careful analysis and friends that will stop you from buying unnecessary items will keep you financially healthy.

“Choose the thing that you own wisely, it will greatly affect your future.”

What are the things that you have regretted buying?

Never Compromise on Your Goal

If you couldn’t aim for the best, should you settle for the second?

Have you encountered a situation where you couldn’t aim for what you want, and finally you decided to aim lower? These are the examples when one aim lower: “I am bad on exams, I think a D grade is fine for me”, “I couldn’t afford for an overseas trip, a domestic getaway shouldn’t be bad also”. By lowering your standard, is it able to make you satisfied? Does it let you easier to achieve your goal?

By aiming low arguably will make things getting uncomplicated. As nobody in this world is perfect, it also makes one realize that what makes one incapable. It also cancels the suffering that one needs to pass through to achieve goals. Imagine one doesn’t need to work hard to save up for vacation and could buy anything one wishes. Doesn’t it sound good?

It sounds good as one doesn’t need to work hard. However, it means that one gives up on his/her bottom line. It leads to some effects: everything just goes with the flow, agreeable and could be affected easily, and less option in the long term.

Just Go With The Flow

When a worker gets a low salary, just let it be. When a kid is bullied by his peer, the kid just let it go. When one thinks that go with the flow will bring a miracle, it is dubious to actualize it. As everyone has a habit, the same manner in a similar situation will likely generate a similar result. Unless one is not compromise with the current situation, it is improbable for one to have a better living condition.

Over Agreeable and Easily Affected

Imagine when a guy stopped trying hard to achieve what he wants, he will follow the crowd. He will pursue his life expediently. May be the guy is disagreeable to the people surrounding him, while he is easily affected by the social norm. In a sense, his life path is indirectly controlled by society.

Less Future Option

The most significant consequences when one compromises goal is future choice. Some compromise because of the fear of failure and rejection. When one failed after trying several times, one may stop aiming at what one wishes. When one has compromised, plans and goals are getting further away. In the end, it will lead one to have a discontent life.

Therefore, never easily giving up on what you own and what you wish. Every time you let go, every time you will lose something. If you never compromise on what you want, the world will compromise on you.

“If you never compromise on what you want, the world will compromise on you.”

Are you willing to be persistent on your goal, or let yourself live in regret?