Self-regulation is a vital function to humanity, and is an important factor in the dominant paradigm of consumer research, whereby consumer decisions are characterised by the battle between long- and short-term interests. The current research examined the relative effectiveness of two self-regulatory strategies: stopping an already-commenced consumption episode, or to not commence one at all. Traditional economic theories, including the principle of diminishing marginal utility, would predict that not starting is harder to accomplish; whereas a proposal by Thaler (1983) suggests that not starting is in fact the optimal strategy. Two studies were conducted whereby participants were asked to either perform a less-favoured task and resist from starting a more-favoured one (Not Start), or to cease performing a more-favoured task to complete the less-favoured task (Stop). Study 1 found that Stop was more difficult than Not Start, which tentatively supported Thaler’s argument; however there was an explanation which could not be ruled out, namely the psychological distance of the anticipated second task. Study 2 addressed this issue by manipulating that factor by incorporating it into the experimental design. It was found that Not Start became as depleting as Stop when psychological distance of the second task was reduced. This research contributed to the literature by establishing a boundary condition upon the strength model of self-regulatory resource depletion, and adds to the discussion on the descriptive validity of the principle of diminishing marginal utility.