Shop_balance_decision_web

Balanced shopping

Shopping can be a perilous endeavour at the best of times. For a start there is the altered space-time continuum existing in clothes store change rooms that means no person actually looks like they do in a change-room mirror. Add to this the need to be nimble of foot to avoid over-zealous, wide-smiled shop assistants and the proximity of other loud-talking, rhino-hipped shoppers competing to snap up your target bargains and shopping is a task only for the brave of soul. You need to be at your peak of form to shop well and that means being ready to make smart decisions on the spot in the heat of battle. The good news is that to make your decisions as good as possible you just need to hop.

This has emerged from a new study that involved subjects being put in a position where they needed to exert balance as they made decisions about buying. For instance, in one experiment subjects were asked to lean backwards in a chair while shopping online. In another experiment the subjects played a Wii Fit game while answering questions about product choices. In another subjects stood on one foot while considering which printer they would purchase. In all cases of course, the decisions made by the subjects were compared to decisions made by people who were not in a situation where they had to achieve balance.

The results showed that people who were focusing on physical balance were more likely to make spending decisions that were in the middle of the scale rather than at the high or low end of the scale.

The theory is that anything that forces your mind to focus on physical balance also encourages balance in your choices. So if someone asks you out to dinner and you are a touch unsure try balancing on one foot while you make your decision. If you are making a major product choice like buying a car or a house perhaps you might like to take a fit-ball or a pogo stick with you to the showroom or the viewing. You might raise a few eyebrows from the sales folk but your decisions could just be better for it.

Terry Robson

Terry Robson

Terry Robson is the Editor-in-Chief of WellBeing and the Editor of EatWell.

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