The IKEA Effects: What I learn from the Swedish Furniture

apart from frustration, there’s another thing I get from IKEA

my IKEA effect


as I assembled my furniture my mom got me from IKEA, I was pumped about building them by myself

How cool would that be!

First furniture: I must be a genius and a pretty strong woman


Second piece: YES, I’M INVINCIBLE

It wasn’t long before the third furniture changed the game

the screw wouldn’t fit in the bed frame –  but! I already built the same model hours ago and what’s wrong with this one!

😩 whaaa

😤 omggg

😭 huhuhu

😑 aigooo

😴 zzzzz

as nothing was progressing, I decided to take a cat nap on my new bed



Waking up the next day to continue the job, I realized that all those time I was trying to put the screw in, I was using the wrong one!


[ I was supposed to use the bottom one with finer teeth!]

Ermmmm lol 😅

As my Singaporean side would say, I’m so “paiseh


What did I learn?

my IKEA effect

Looking back, I realized that making IKEA furniture might not be as frustrating and exasperating as I thought. If it became difficult, then maybe I might be doing something wrong.

In this scenario, I was actually trying to force something that wasn’t meant to be.

If I didn’t take a break/a pause to reconsider my actions, I might 1) blame the IKEA for the “lousy” furniture 2) wail and throw the screw against the wall 3) got hit by the rebounding screw

Similarly, life might also be like IKEA. If it’s difficult, then maybe I’m doing something wrong.

Who knows?

Maybe this funny lesson might be true or maybe it’s only applicable to my life

because as my Singaporean side might say, I’m a bit of the “blur sotong







Interestingly, I came across a research thing called

The IKEA Effect

from Professor Dan Ariely


What is it?

In a nutshell, it’s an phenomenon when labor leads to love.


Me assembled a bed (see above process). Bed is finished and bed is (to me) sooooo pretty!

to others: it might be WT* It’s so ughh-ly 😒

For a curious mind: What is entailed in this IKEA effect?

Disclaimer: below quotes are copy-n-paste from the Visible Learning and the Science of How We Learn by John Hattie and Gregory Yates – where I stumbled upon this phenomenon

The IKEA effect appears to be entirely the result of investing energy to complete a worthwhile project and then being able to stand back an admire its successful outcome.


When this effect doesn’t work: 

[Again: lifting quotes from book]

  • Simply working on a project, contributing to it without seeing it through to closure, does not appear to produce the effect at all.
  • Too difficult that students couldn’t even finish in finishing low quality models



Who know? It might be true according to this research or might be not?

If you decided to try assembling IKEA furniture, let me know if my IKEA effect or Dr Ariely’s IKEA effect occurs to you?

Interestingly and importantly, is there your own IKEA effect?

A funny quote to end the post with



Featured image by Hedof

Record keeping: started building this furniture on June 5 2017

2 more furnitures to go



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