How my adventure Prius can help explain the 24 hour rule for major purchases
Do you know that one of the most incredible things about having an adventure van is not stressing about having an Adventure Van? Many years ago, my first adventure vehicle was not a van but a royal blue Prius. It was my Adventure Prius. Not only was it my daily commuter, but it was my gateway to adventure.
I could pack that car so tight with all my gear. I could squeeze everything that we needed inside. Then I would drive it all over the place on adventures. Sometimes I would travel solo, and sometimes I would even pack in my wife and 3 kids. I piloted that Adventure Prius down Hole in the Rock road, which is notoriously rutted and washboardy. And I did that several times. At the end of its life, my Adventure Prius had more than 300k miles, and many of those miles represented terrific memories. My wife cried when the time came to have it towed away.
I loved my Adventure Prius. Because of that car, my family and I had extraordinary experiences that will always be part of us. Now I continue to have experiences and create memories with my family but with a little more space inside my Adventure Van.
It’s common sense that I didn’t start with a van. At the time, the Prius was all that I could afford. I wasn’t willing to disrupt my cash flow with the payment size that a proper adventure vehicle would require. I certainly needed more funds to buy a van outright. So I had to wait until my income caught up with my dream.
One of the problems in our society is that even though decisions to wait are usually common sense, we don’t. Instead, we buy what we want when we want it. We need to practice good behavioral finance and map out our decisions’ future consequences. Instead, we purchase now and think later. And then financial stress and feelings of unease can set in.
To avoid this pitfall that traps so many of our neighbors and friends, I recommend using the 24-hour rule. If there is a more significant purchase that you really want. Wait 24 to 48 hours minimum before deciding to buy. It may be prudent to wait days or weeks for major purchases. During that time, think of how your cash flow will be impacted. Will you have to dip into your cash reserve? Will this decision create financial stress for you down the road? Like most of us, I have made a few bad decisions in my life and can tell you that no purchase is worth severe financial stress. Pretty soon, the shine may come off the apple, but the feelings of anxiety might remain.
If you do your analysis and decide the time to buy isn’t now, create a purchase plan. That’s what I did. First, I mapped out my income, cash flow, and savings. Then I decided when the right time would be to purchase my Adventure Van. Next, I worked towards my goal and put it on a vision board. And then, when my income was right, and I knew that my cash flow would not be interrupted and that my savings were in place, I was able to act. And now I am without regret and without stress. And I’m planning my next weekend adventure.