Rate Your Desires
Frugality demands that we cut things from our lives that we otherwise wouldn’t have had an issue buying. Financial Independence demands that you are strict with spending and build a nest egg that can support you for the remainder of your life.
These paradigms make for a lot of difficult decisions in your life, but I believe if you rate your wants versus the needs of your nest egg, you can find the money to still have fun.
I have found balance in the things that I want and have made some tough financial decisions. Now, I look for splurge items that fit my overall budget. Let’s get you there as well.
So let’s have some fun!
What Do We Need?
The first thing we need to do is find out what in our life is a “need”. These are the not fun portions of our budget.
I think we can agree that the are the bare necessities to living your life.
We cannot neglect any of these factors when budgeting for our future.
What we can do however is make sure that we spend as little on these items as possible, allowing for more of a budget for the rest of our life. Just because they are essential, doesn’t mean you have to pay too much for them.
- Clothes– Buy used or only on clearance.
- Transportation- Buy a bicycle or buy a cheap used car with cash.
- Utilities- Keep your thermostat high in the summer and low in winter.
- Food- Eat out as little as humanly possible and prepare good low cost meals at home.
Now that we know what we need, let’s get to the fun stuff that we want!
What Do We Want?
This category is what our desires are made of, these are the things that we secretly dream of owning and openly want.
- Cars- Damn, that Tesla Model 3 is looking good!
- Homes- I’ve always wanted a dedicated office and man cave.
- Food- There is nothing better than a great meal that isn’t possible at home.
- Electronics- That 70” OLED TV is calling my name, I swear!
It’s ok to WANT things, but generally if purchased they could cause major setbacks in your journey to freedom. We want to rate these items against each other to determine what will give us the best cost to benefit ratio and keep our want desires fulfilled for awhile.
This part of the journey you have to decide for yourself.
You may say that the cheapest item on the list is the only thing you’ll splurge on, but buying an electric car may make your life a much easier one and benefit the planet. The lowest cost option isn’t always the right decision, make sure you take every aspect of this choice into consideration.
How to Decide?
So how do we decide what to buy if we are thinking of splurging?
Take all of your wants and factor them against your budget. Once you rate these items and find the number 1 want, you determine if it fits into a budget that still allows you to reach your savings goals.
Be mindful not to pare back your savings goals to make this splurge fit. Some folks will say it hurts to forgo certain things, and others will say I’m crazy for allowing a splurge at all. There is a middle ground, folks.
Your priorities will be different from mine, I cannot afford an electric car at all, but some of you may be able to. I want to encourage you to get something that could contribute to your happiness and mental well being.
Tips On Finding Balance
Just because we have a splurge item, doesn’t mean we change our overall mentality of frugality. That life is one we adhere to in perpetuity, and it will pay us back immensely.
That is why we find balance in life and create budgets that we stick to. I didn’t want to make folks feel like they are doomed to a life of austerity just to get to their goals.
Remember that we are hustling our asses off to make our dreams a reality, but sometimes our mental health may need that splurge.
In other words, don’t feel bad for treating yourself as long as it doesn’t compromise any of your goals.
We are given thousands of choices everyday in how we manage our lives. I want you to walk away from this article knowing that you can make an indulgent choice and still make your goals a reality.
Rate your desired items not only on cost, but how it would benefit you, your family, and maybe even the planet.
Personally, I don’t have much money to splurge with, but I did buy some new basketball shoes. I found them on clearance for $63 and they retailed for $120. I felt really good about that, and my feet thanked me.
What have you done for yourself lately? Do you have a certain thing that you cannot pass up and are willing to forgo other things for? Let us know!