17 comments

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  • I like especially two points of this post.

    1. 'Spend money on the things you love.' – Sometimes we may be too focused on the future and we forget to live right now.

    2. '“Don’t feel the need to keep up with the Joneses” is one of the rallying crys of the personal finance blogosphere.' – This is a good rallying cry because our preferences are all personal. The Joneses might like something I don't really care for. That part makes sense to me. But the funny thing about this statement is that “keeping up with the Joneses” seems to be a motivator for many bloggers. Bloggers are keeping up with their own Joneses, the other bloggers, in the way they blog and try to make some extra income….

  • Dogma can kill you in anything. To believe something without thought is very dangerous. Now if keeping up with the Joneses is causing you to overspend and get deep in debt.. by all means break the hold and stop the insanity. But if buying a German car fits in your budget, your lifestyle and your desires… then buy one.

    I agree that saving money to put in the stock market may not be the greatest idea. I was commenting on http://www.thedigeratilife.com about a post she made on the stock market and her expectations and it ended up being a fairly long post on my blog with some good free resources.

    http://www.askthewealthsquad.com/blog/stock-mar… You and your readers may find it interesting.

    I much prefer to build a small sideline business. I think it may be the only way to stay ahead of inflation but even then our government is making it a tougher challenge with new regs, taxes and requirements. I prefer it because there it depends on me and my plan .. not some CEO I don't know and a business I may not understand.

  • No, no, no. The key is to spend your money on what you need, not on what your neighbors have. I couldn't tell you what kind of cars my neighbors have, and I'm pretty sure most of them couldn't tell you about mine. You acquire what you need, and what makes you happy. It has nothing to do with those around you. If you can internalize that message, I guarantee you will be happy.

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  • Nice insight! There's a point where asceticism…well, has no point. Unless you're saving for some reason, denying yourself can morph into a kind of pathology.

    Now…my feeling is that instead of keeping up with the Joneses, you should BE the Joneses. The trick is to do something everyone else wishes they'd done: do it first, and do it conspicuously.

    Some years ago (quite a few somes), I took it upon my lush young girlish self to haul a shovel and a wheelbarrow into the front yard and work like a freaking horse to upgrade and renovate the landscape. Pretty quick, the guy across the street starts to fix up his yard. And then another house gets spruced up.

    Guy Across Street to Lush Young Woman's Husband: “After seeing what you did, I felt like I had to keep up and do something to our house, too.”

    LOL! That neighborhood gentrified fast and is now one for the most irrationally overpriced in the city. 😉

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  • Overdraft_Savvy

    “You don’t save money so you can save more. You save money so you can spend it on things you value instead of things you don’t.”

    What a great quote. It's amazing how we always seem to be short on cash. And yet, if people just stopped spending on things that they didn't really make them happy, they would be a whole lot closer to reaching their financial goals, if not making them.

    We should approach everything we spend on with a simple little cost-benefit analysis like this.

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  • Great post! I've never understood people who save for the sake of saving. I save for the sake of doing the things I love, whatever those things may be. Personal finance isn't really about giving up nice things. It's about giving up the things that don't matter for the things that do.

  • Great post! I've never understood people who save for the sake of saving. I save for the sake of doing the things I love, whatever those things may be. Personal finance isn't really about giving up nice things. It's about giving up the things that don't matter for the things that do.