Why am I not buying Gold this Akshaya Tritiya?

Every morning, I get distracted while reading the newspaper. After all, every other page is swarmed with big advertisements from Jewellery brands. Buying Gold and Diamond Jewellery is the weakness of many Indian women, so is mine. And what better time than Akshaya Tritiya and Dhanteras for the Jewellery makers to cash on this weakness? These ads play trick with women’s mind – striking signature pieces, shot exotically to show the intricate designs – just about enough to hypnotise the ladies!

I used to be a victim of these marketing traps but not anymore! There is a strong reason for me to not buy any gold this Akshaya Tritiya. Read on to know why.

Flashback: Me – Until One year ago

Though I am not a strong believer of Akshaya Tritiya celebrations, it was just another reason for me to indulge in some gold shopping! Whether I open my email inbox or my phone inbox or even my post box at home – all the jewellery brands that I had previously bought jewellery with – would remind me that I need to finish up all my savings and make them a tad richer!

And suddenly, the not-so-important addition to the jewellery box would become a basic survival need without which life cannot persist! And the hunt to find that elusive, within the budget (obviously, I ain’t no Bill Gates), exquisite and unique piece of jewellery starts off with a bang!

But, no amount is huge enough when it comes to buying gold and diamonds! How much ever I try, I would almost always shoot up my budget. And there goes my contingency fund in the safe hands of the jeweller. That smile on his face while handing over the bill, the heaviness in my heart while handing over the cash – Priceless! SACRIFICE – all in the name of love for the yellow metal!

Is that it? NO!

Any special occasion in the family would certainly call for a trip to jewellery store and again, my savings would tank! In case I needed more money – I would put Neetan’s credit card to good use! And he had no choice other than keying in those precious 4 digit passcode into the swiping machine!!

This cycle continued for 5 years into our marriage and last year i.e. in March 2016, after Rinith’s big 3rd year birthday bash – for which I obviously bought a new sparkling signature necklace – Neetan and I had an argument.

For what?

From a long time, I was pestering Neetan for a Euro trip especially to Croatia or Iceland. He argued that these destinations are not pocket friendly. But, I stayed with my choice of destination and couldn’t convince my mind to change those – as these places had grown on me and had been deep rooted in my mind.

He next gave a detailed analysis(Arghh! Typical developer!) of how I have been spending my money these years and pointed out the fact that I had hardly saved anything! I earn, I spend all – End of the story.

Well, here the algorithm is complicated!

Will I compromise on the destination? NO

Would he be able to save so much for the family trip all alone? YES, but for next year.

Can he do it this year? NO.

Am I ready to let go of it this year? NO.

Have I saved anything to contribute? Yes, I have saved only rants.

Money? NO.

At least now am I ready to compromise? Again NO.

Neetan got all worked up and said ‘There are women who are crazy about buying Jewellery OR shopping endlessly for clothes OR passionate about travelling – But, I am a not a case of ‘OR’ but a peculiar case of ‘AND’ of all the above things mentioned. I ain’t no businessman, but a salaried employee with limited income every month where a major chunk of it goes to future savings and existing commitments and we got to live with this truth!’

I thought for some time and realised that it was high time, and I HAD TO prioritize things in my life. I can’t have everything at once. Some such blessed people exist but make up hardly 0.1% of the population! And the rest of them are just like us, struggling every day, counting every penny earned and spent. But I also knew, giving up my Jewellery addiction would be as difficult as giving up my Travel plans.

What did I do?

I made a plan to cheat myself.

I convinced my mind that I have enough jewellery and I need not buy more. In fact, I had more than what my peers had – which was a true thing! I promised myself not to get intimidated to buy even a small piece of gold. To make this a reality, I challenged Neetan that I wouldn’t buy any gold or diamond until Rinith’s next birthday! I love challenges and deadlines – so I knew I would be in check if I had a challenge to keep up to.

I announced Neetan that I would save my part and Neetan should go ahead and save his part! He laughed it off! This kindled my ego and took my challenge seriously.

Next, I decided to set aside a fixed amount to indulge in shopping nirvana and started to save the rest of my small freelance income in a separate account to which I did not have easy access with debit/credit cards.

Fast forward – Today

I not only passed the challenge with flying colours by not buying any jewellery but we finished a Euro trip to Croatia, Italy and other Balkan countries.

Reading Suggestion: A big fat Europe Roadtrip to Croatia, Italy and the Balkans

I side tracked a little bit and spent almost 50k on sarees in a trip to Kanchipuram. C’mon, it was my sister’s house warming – I am not buying new jewellery, I deserve a couple of new sarees at least!!

After seeing my good performance in the challenge, I decided to take it up again this year too!!

My mother in law is trying to entice me by saying that she will give gold coins and I might go ahead and get something done with them. But my heart pains even to pay the making charge for buying Gold jewellery. I politely declined the offer. I’m trying to be strong and to stay rooted! All for the next mission – Mission Iceland!

P.S: I accept gifts. Please send some gold my way if you feel the poor girl has had enough! 😀

2018 Update: I did travel to Iceland in August 2017! Yay! Read more about my Iceland Itinerary here.