Author Topic: Is gardening stuff, DIY tools, etc... "allowed" ?  (Read 1873 times)


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Is gardening stuff, DIY tools, etc... "allowed" ?
« on: July 24, 2016, 01:24:45 PM »
Hello, I am a 22 years old student from France and have been recently more and more interested in the moustachian philosophy.

It seem like a very powerful way of living, however I have a few questions.

First, there's this whole stoic thing. I understand the need to don't crave useless stuff (iPad, random gadgets), overpriced stuff (a 30k$ car, a huge huge house...) and to optimize your life. But then, what about other kind of desires ? For example, I'd really like to be able to do more farming, build stuff, make electronic things (which is not only about personal pleasure, but also a more autonomous life)... which mean either a garden or a house big enough for containers garden/hydroponics, space to build stuff and the tools that goes with it... what does the philosophy of the moustache (man this sound like a cult or something) says about that ? By the way any advice on being able to have it as soon as possible would be nice, however don't feel like you have to spoon feed me everything.

Then, once you're retired. Technically once I'm there (easier said than done as I haven't started working yet) I could play video-games and do other pointless stuff. Playing video-games while you're still getting toward retirement is irrational (since you could spend that time either with people, or learning things that will help you by an enormous amount later). But once you're retired ? To add context to the question, keep in mind that I'm somewhat of an addict on this case so I might not be entirely partial.

What can I do with those two things ? Any help (tips, links, whatever) would be appreciated. Thanks.


  • Stubble
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Re: Is gardening stuff, DIY tools, etc... "allowed" ?
« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2016, 02:16:39 PM »
tl;dr:  Live mindfully.  Make decisions that reflect your values and the things you know will make you happy today and in the future.  Understand yourself and human nature well enough to have an accurate prediction of what brings actual happiness in ways that lasts.

It's not about allowed, it's about what makes sense.

If you adore playing video games, then play video games.  If you get a lot out of gardening, go for it.  If you can steer those hobbies in ways that reduce their cost or increase their benefit to you, even better.  Paying someone to maintain a flower garden for you is probably .. less wise .. than gardening yourself and raising food that you actually eat.

Spending all of your time gardening at the expense of your job may cost you the ability to garden in the long term, because you'll be broke and will never be able to quit working a crappy job that you hate. :)  Working 80 hours per week and never gardening may leave you miserable in the other direction.  Figure out a balance that works for you.

Owning 3 video game consoles is probably a bad idea - there's greatly diminishing returns after you already have the capability to play a bunch of games.  Life is full of diminishing returns, and being aware of them is useful.  In many situations, having _a_ car is useful.  Having a car that doesn't break down frequently is useful, and will increase your happiness.  But a 50k car?  Only a very marginal return -- and the money spent on it could likely be invested in much more profitable ways that yield much more happiness than the car did.

In other threads - which are worth reading - people often suggest making a list of the things that are most important to you.  And asking where you see yourself in 20 years.

For me, it's about maximizing overall happiness/life satisfaction and contribution to the world.  But, of course, the latter is really just a way of achieving happiness.


  • Pencil Stache
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Re: Is gardening stuff, DIY tools, etc... "allowed" ?
« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2016, 03:10:26 PM »
Mustachianism isn't about giving up things you love to min-max your savings. It's ultimately about using your money SMARTLY to do what is important to you in your life.

I've been a gamer for a long time. I'm now FIRE and I *still* play video games. A lot. There's nothing wrong with that. I spend far less on video games per year than some people here spend on other hobbies that also aren't necessarily increasing your badassity. Alcohol is a good example of one of those hobbies others partake in and spend more than me with my gaming. Not saying that enjoying alcohol is wrong either necessarily, I'm just saying everyone has different things they gain pleasure from.

I also don't think gadgets are necessarily a poor purchase either. Heck, MMM himself has a really fancy coffee machine. That's a gadget! But it's worth it for him though because his fancy coffee machine makes him some fancy coffee for far less than it would cost for him to buy fancy coffee from a coffee shop. If you get a lot of use out of it, then you can justify it. Just don't buy gadgets just to say you have one and it just sitting there collecting dust.

You can probably find ways in your life to become more badass. Here's some things I've changed since FIRE to become more badass:

- I hang dry my laundry.
- I keep my house clean. I know this sounds funny, but when I worked, I never cleaned the house as often as I would've liked. So even though it's a minor thing, it makes me feel a lot better.
- I cook my meals myself, from scratch. I've always found cooking fun, but now that I have the time for it, I'm constantly trying out new recipes. I eat healthier now too because I don't eat so many pre-prepared frozen foods.
- I exercise now. I just started this today so it isn't a habit. Not yet. But I admit I never went out of my way to exercise. Now I do.
- I DIY stuff more now.

Stuff I want to do but haven't started yet:
- Have a vegetable garden
- Play guitar more

Those lists I'm sure a lot of MMM followers will say is badass, right? But I still play video games a lot. I still have my guilty pleasure stuff. But that's OK! You don't need to give up stuff you enjoy, as long as you be smart about it. Don't waste all of your money on it, look for sales, be selective, make sure to put aside time for the badassity things...


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: Is gardening stuff, DIY tools, etc... "allowed" ?
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2016, 01:08:41 PM »
Thanks both of you for your replies. I've put "allowed" in quote though, I didn't have a better word nor a better title.

So yeah, it's more about what makes sense and what you actually need. I sometime find myself searching a while for ideas of what people can buy me for birthday/xmas, because I don't really have any desire to possess something. I sometime feel like I'm just trying to create fake needs, if that makes sense.

I guess, with the video games thing, having a few guilty pleasure and recognizing them as such is the key.

Also, for example, having a drone would be cool. I'd be able to make it fly, takes photos... and have it collect dust passed the initial thrill. However I guess that if I was into film making or photo shooting, it would be a worthwhile thing to have. Having a dishwasher would be considered a good choice, if I'm not mistaken then ? Since it'll make you win time (maybe like 20 minutes daily) for better things.


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