The Why Behind the Buy

Understanding consumerism and why we buy

Why Holiday 'Self-Gifting' Is On the Rise

In an increasingly “me-centric” society, shopping for yourself while shopping for others is simply more acceptable. Read More

Self-gifting is not as selfish as the psychologists would like to believe

I've always self-gifted at the holiday season. I do it for the following reasons:

1) If I feel I have saved enough money during the year I know that I will have a few dollars to spend on stuff I want and that I need. I look at my budget and get an understanding on what funds might be available at the end of year so I know I have saved enough to splurge finally.

2) Prices go down the day after Christmas and one can get really great deals.

3) I often have a few days available around the holidays so it is the perfect time to set up new devices and learn new software programs.

Don't read more stuff into self-gifting that isn't there. We all have to buy new underwear at some point.


Thank you for your comment. I completely agree. I hope I was able to also communicate that the great prices and tradition are part of the allure. There are really a number of reasons, some involving self-involvement but others having more to do with retailing.

Not everyone gets gifts from others

Not everyone has family or partner to buy them gifts. This time of year is only time you can get good deals on things especially clothing and electronics. If you don't buy now then you won't get it for a cheaper price. For months after Christmas there is nothing in stores because inventory is depleted. Hence buy it now or it won't be available. My own family has always been one that just gives money because they can't be bothered with shopping or getting to know what I like or what size I wear. I think a lot of people are like that these days where they receive only money or gift cards so of course they shop for themselves since no one else does.


Thank you for your comment. There are indeed some great deals. I hope that was communicated in the first couple of points in my piece!

IF you want to buy your

IF you want to buy your children some good gifts for the holidays finding good reviews is key! You can read some helpful reviews at

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Kit Yarrow is a professor of psychology and marketing at Golden Gate University in San Francisco.


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