Positive Psychology and Watches

This is a post about the concept of ‘positive psychology’ drawing on the work of Martin Seligman, and a few ways to apply the concepts to watch collecting.

The hunt

Have you noticed how watch collectors seem to refer to their hobby as a disease? Why is that? Many collectors will attest to the fact that no matter how ‘grail worthy’ a new purchase may be, they always seem to tire of it eventually. Why is that?

How to think

It has been a while since my last post… and in this case, the connection to watches doesn’t extend beyond anything I have said before. The topic of thinking itself, is something I haven’t previously addressed explicitly, though I have probably talked around it in several ways. So here’s a first attempt!

The Paradox of Choice – quasi book summary and discussion

Barry Schwartz is an American psychologist, Professor of Social Theory and Social Action at Swarthmore College, and since 2016 has been visiting professor at the University of California, Berkeley. His work focuses on the intersection of psychology and economics… He is also the author of the book “The Paradox of Choice” and he talks about the concepts from the book in this TED talk. In this post I wanted to outline some of the key points he makes, and connect them to a watch collector’s decision-making processes.

Yak shaving and watch collecting

Have you ever heard of the term “Yak shaving”? The term was supposedly coined by Carlin Vieri from MIT, but others attribute its popularity to a Ren and Stimpy episode. Either way, I found it had some applicability to watch collecting, so I decided to share some thoughts on this; while slightly obscure and not wholly enlightening… hopefully still educational!

The Watch Collector’s Matrix

Do you sometimes feel like you spend all your time putting out proverbial fires in your life? At the end of the day do you feel completely sapped and drained of energy, and yet can’t point to anything of real significance which you accomplished that day? Yes? Well then, you are probably confusing the urgent with the important!

In terms of watch purchasing decisions, people tend to have similar problems – where the ‘importance’ is replaced with ‘desire’ – since the purchase of a luxury watch is rarely important. I will talk about the Eisenhower matrix before exploring The Watch Collector’s Matrix in its application to watch purchasing decisions.