You may have heard the theory that the key to saving and wealth building is to dramatically lower your spending. The idea is logical, but seemingly undoable for most people, so let us examine why you are spending so much, and maybe convince you to spend a little less. This is not an article on saving money because we already have plenty of them.
If you are struggling financially and the causes for those struggles are related to your spending habits (you are spending TOO much on completely unnessesary things), then ytou may have a problem.
You won’t be able to help yourself and get out of finacial difficulties unless you address the underlying problem: you.
This article is not aimed at those single moms / single parents who are in financial difficult due to a lack of a job or a low income.
It’s aimed at those who make enough money to be somewhat comfortable, but spend more money than they can afford.
The goal of this article is to actually convince you not to spend as much money as you do.
You May Be Spending Money To Make Yourself Happy
Life is boring most of the time. Most people are neither happy nor sad most of the time. Guess what…that is how life is supposed to be. Trying to make yourself happy with drink, drugs, sex or spending is the same as going on the same roller coaster again and again to make yourself happy.
The fact is that you cannot be happy all the time, but why not turn “happy” your default position. Instead of waiting for something to make you happy, why don’t you decide to be happy? Learn the benefits of being grateful for what you have–because you could have far less.
Recognize the fact that you keep spending money in order to make yourself happy. Understand that doing so is the same as riding the same rollercoaster over and over again. The truth is that you cannot “make” yourself happy; you can only decide to be happy.
Your Desire To Spend May Be Insatiable
Let’s break it down to the most basic level. Some people develop a “want” and the more you feed this “want,” then the stronger it gets. Addicts have this problem. Sure, when they are clean, they still want to partake of their addictive act, but the urge is not as strong as when they are doing it habitually.
If you spend money to cheer yourself up, or worse still, if you spend money because you are bored or unfulfilled, then you may have a big problem. The fact is that the more you go through the cycle of spending to manage your feelings, the more you rely on spending to manage your feelings.
You Can Manage Your Happiness So You Do Not Need To Spend
It is easy enough for an article to tell you what not to do, but few offer advice on what to do after you stop, so here is some. You should ask yourself what other people do to manage their feelings, as looking outwards may give you a clearer perspective.
Understand that you can engineer a situation where you make yourself happy by default. Whenever you are feeling neutral, decide to feel happy. Decide to be in a good mood. Do not wait for an event to make you happy, and do not try to manufacture an event to make you happy.
How much time do you spend chasing happiness? Consider this point because few people realize that their biggest frustrations in life are based on their insatiable need to chase happiness. Are you frustrated with dogs barking or kids playing because it genuinely bothers you, or because you want and expect things to be under your control and for your current mood to remain untainted? Are you eating because you are genuinely hungry, or have you just become bored or stressed?
You can manage your feelings far easier than you think. When you are having an argument with your spouse and somebody turns up at the door or calls on the phone, do you shout at the other person? Do you maintain your bad mood? Are you angry and ratty with the other person? Or, do you do what most people do and put a happy face on and act like everything is fine? Most people can change their whole attitude and mood in seconds to suit the situation. If you can do it then, why can’t you do it all the time? It may feel fake at first, but as you practice, you start to realize just how much control over how you feel on the inside.
Do Not Try To Remove Negative Thoughts From Your Mind
You are going to read a lot of articles that tell you to be positive and remove all negative thoughts from your mind, but apart from being childish advice, it is also useless. Nobody can remove all negative thoughts from their mind; it is part of human nature and part of your survival. A person that is positive all the time must be mentally ill.
Instead of trying to remove negative thoughts from your mind, try replacing them with positive thoughts. You may be sad that your partner left you, but be happy that you got as much time with that person as you did. Also, remember that you must have been happy if your partner’s departure makes you this sad.
There is a good example here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-7558NYtwY
Trying to see the best in everything is okay, but it is probably more realistic to try to find the lesson in each event. It is an idea first taught by Napoleon Hill, where he said that every failure offers a valuable lesson. If you figure out what you can learn from each failure or sad event, then you create a benefit where there were none. You turn a negative into a positive. Try to find the lesson in each sad event, even if the lesson is existential, such as how life is short and we should treasure every moment.
Learn The Joy Of Saving And Investing
Getting to see the fruits of your investment is very satisfying. Even keeping your money in a savings account and seeing it pay you interest is rather fun. If you are just starting out, then look for accounts that pay interest monthly, so you may experience the joys of earning interest a little sooner.
The more you learn about saving and investing, then the more you will enjoy it. Actually gaining experience through doing it and earning your reward (however small) is oddly satisfying. You may also have more success if you learn more about it, so start today. Here are a few of our articles to get you started.
Your Life Is Not What You Thought It Should Be…
This section is based on a principle that Dennis Prager came up with. If you do not know him, he is a radio show host and writer…and a very frustrating man. Some of the stuff he says will have you throwing your hat in the air and celebrating your agreement with him, and other things he says may disappoint you. He is a very intelligent and well reasoned man, even if he does (rarely) have a few disagreeable opinions, and he says that nothing you ever have will be sufficient, and your quest to fill said sufficiency void will often leave you poor or in debt.
He gave an example with a poster advert he once saw. The advert said, “If you are not completely satisfied with your sex life, give us a call.” It is a clever advert because people are never “completely satisfied.” No matter how perfect something is, a person is never completely satisfied.
This is not to say that human nature is a negative one or that human nature is critical or prone to complaining. The fact is that human nature is insatiable. People are never completely satisfied because their nature will not let them. If you ever meet a person on the fortune 500 list, ask them a few questions that include the fortune 500 list, and you will find one commonality. All of them are a little upset or disappointed that there are people above them in the list. It wouldn’t bother them if the list didn’t exist, but because it does, they want to be higher on it.
You will never be sated. You will never be thin enough, rich enough, sexy enough, strong enough, talented enough, and so on. No matter how much money you spend, there is always a limit to what you can have and achieve. Learn to recognize your insatiable nature for what it is, and stop spending money on a battle you cannot win.
Your life is not what you thought it should be, and the fact is that it never will be. Life is going to hand you different cards, and it is up to you how you play them. You can spend the rest of your life trying to live up to the perfect image you have in your head, or you can accept that your human nature is insatiable, and invest your time in using what you have got to give yourself a better future.