Impulse buying and Retail therapy both rate their own article in Wikipedia. This ideas of reckless spending are probably promoted in no small part by reckless spenders wanting to feel that they are just like everyone else. (I just came across an msn article suggesting that most of us actually have very little credit card debt.)
What do you think of a new idea: Impulse giving & charitable therapy? I think it is practiced by a lot of people too. I wonder, is it better than its commercial counterparts?
Here’s where the missed opportunity analysis comes in. If I give a homeless guy a fiver (impulse giving), in a sense I’m hurting him by not giving the fiver to United Way or Habitat for Humanity. If I donate $100 to every charity that asks, first you’ll be asked by a LOT of charities, but then later regret my generosity, I may have done some spiritual damage to myself.
These reservations notwithstanding, do you think we can get the same high we get from buying a new toy by making a generous donation? I am asking seriously because I think maybe we can.