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Savings Challenge

Buyer's Remorse: What the Heck Was I Thinking?

Make a note of those items you regret on your "What the Heck Was I Thinking?" list, and then take a few minutes to study the items on the list. If you're like most people, you'll probably notice some trends. For example, maybe you're prone to repent of some types of purchases (for instance, clothing or tech gadgets) more than others. Or maybe purchases from a certain store tend to disappoint you.

When I first started keeping this kind of list years ago, one of the trends I noticed in my own spending (or misspending, as the case may be), was that during times when I was particularly stressed out at work, I tended to make more impulse purchases that I inevitably questioned later.

The idea, of course, is to learn from your mistakes and to consciously avoid making the same types of spending mistakes again. I'll bet that if you were to make a "What the Heck Was I Thinking?" list every year, you'd find that each year, the list would get shorter. That would happen because you'd be conditioning yourself to resist impulse purchases and vaccinating yourself against buyer's remorse.

For part two of this week's challenge, post a photo or video of the most outrageous item on your "What the Heck Was I Thinking?" list to our online AARP Savings Challenge group. Even though our weekly challenge has ended, feel free to post your photos, videos and comments.

You can share your photos with the Savings Challenge group as long as you are a member of it. Keep in mind that every photo needs to be associated with a personal profile, so make sure that you add the photo to your profile before adding it to the group.

To add a photo or video to the Savings Challenge group:

After uploading the photo(s) or video(s) to your profile, click on the photo or video that you would like to share.

Locate the Groups header on the right-hand side of the page. If you have not yet shared this piece of content with any group, it will say "no groups selected."

Click the Choose link, and that will provide you with a list of all the groups to which you belong. Then simply click on the group name(s) where you'd like to share your photo or video.

Jeff Yeager is the author of the book, "The Ultimate Cheapskate's Road Map to True Riches." His Web site is

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