Ever since leaving my steady office job to become a freelancer, I've had to become strict about personal spending. So when I went online to get a new mousepad, I put the first one I saw in my cart: black, cheap, with a gel wrist pad. $9.99. Then I thought, maybe I can find one that is purple instead. Click, click. Or floral. Click, click.
I stopped myself right then. It's not that I couldn't afford another 5 bucks for a cuter mousepad. It's that I was doing shopping as entertainment: the browsing, the comparing, the picking and the choosing. It was fun. But shopping as pleasure is exactly the mindset I need to avoid. Whether it's writing or editing or anything else in life, it's all about retraining your head to avoid the mental patterns that are going to bring you down.