Author Topic: Quick, slap some sense into me!  (Read 6850 times)

Adventine

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Quick, slap some sense into me!
« on: June 01, 2017, 09:52:46 AM »
I'm terribly tempted to spend some money on something really stupid right now!

Quick, hit me with your best personal finance memes, quotes, blog links, and/or book recommendations!

*** About me: I'm saving 50% of my salary, have zero debt, 7 years worth of living expenses, monthly auto-investments into a low-cost diversified stock fund, a stable job and decent healthcare. So I'm actually doing okay. I just need some external motivation to stay on track sometimes. So go on, motivate me :D

MonkeyJenga

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2017, 10:51:28 AM »
What is the something stupid, and why do you want it?

pbkmaine

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #2 on: June 01, 2017, 12:02:27 PM »
What is the something stupid, and why do you want it?

Yep.

Adventine

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2017, 06:26:20 PM »
Actually the stupid thing changes every day - I think about buying various things that I don't necessarily need, like new sheets, new clothes, new appliances, spendy vacations, etc.

After some reflection, I think I'm trying to self-medicate a sense of restlessness and dissatisfaction by spending money. Which I know isn't a solution.

pbkmaine

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #4 on: June 01, 2017, 06:36:39 PM »
Why are you restless?

Adventine

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2017, 06:43:10 PM »
That's something I'm still trying to figure out. But in the meantime, I would like external reminders that spending money is not the answer to my restlessness :)

pbkmaine

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2017, 07:11:23 PM »

Anatidae V

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2017, 08:52:08 PM »
Stick an image that symbolises FI to you in your wallet/ screen of your computer etc. Then you're always reminded of the Big Thing that's more important than the small silly thing you want now :)

Dicey

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2017, 05:47:22 PM »
I know this restlessness. One way to scratch this persistent itch is to go food shopping. You need it anyway, right? If you're really desperate for a challenge, give yourself a dollar amount and see how much you can get for your money. Then reward yourself with chocolate ;-)

Hope it passes soon!


2Birds1Stone

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #9 on: June 07, 2017, 07:57:05 PM »
I know this restlessness. One way to scratch this persistent itch is to go food shopping. You need it anyway, right? If you're really desperate for a challenge, give yourself a dollar amount and see how much you can get for your money. Then reward yourself with chocolate ;-)

Hope it passes soon!

Sage advice right there!

aalferez

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #10 on: June 08, 2017, 08:54:51 AM »
I used to be the kind of person that one day has an itch and need to buy something. Like a motorcycle.

Now I have in my computer a post it that says: "Don't buy anything unless completely necessary".

I also sit on the idea for some time. 1 month is ideal but even 1 week works.
After 2 days I completely forgot about what I wanted to buy, and if I remember I find the idea to buy that very stupid so I loose interest in it.

FireHiker

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #11 on: June 08, 2017, 09:45:00 AM »
Do you already keep a list and require "wants" to be on the list for at least 30 days before purchasing? Once I started doing that I found that many of them were no longer wanted enough to actually spend the money 30 days later.

VeggieTable

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #12 on: June 08, 2017, 01:15:35 PM »
One thing that helps me not buy new items is to think about how much cheaper I could buy said item used (and also how much value a new item loses as soon as I walk out of the store). Buying used usually takes a little bit of effort - perusing Craigslist, sifting through Goodwill, checking out eBay. That effort comes with time, which is frequently used to talk myself out of buying whatever it is I'm looking for. Bonus is that if I do end up buying it, I've thought about it for days and am pretty sure I want it and know just where I'll put it. And if I end up regretting it - I know I can at least recoup my money reselling it!

grenzbegriff

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #13 on: June 08, 2017, 11:12:05 PM »
I would like external reminders that spending money is not the answer to my restlessness :)

Dude[tte], don't do it.  You know it won't resolve your restlessness.  Just sit there, and let the wave of existential sadness crash into you.  Then after it's past, you'll see you're still there and it's OK.

dreams_and_discoveries

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #14 on: June 09, 2017, 12:41:06 AM »
Yeah, if it's not something you need or that would add real value, don't do it.

Spending for spending's sake is bad. As is eating for eating's sake.

I'm trying to turn to exercise, which is always good for exercise's sake.

Can you go for walks, do yoga for the restlessness?

jlcnuke

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #15 on: June 09, 2017, 08:12:18 PM »
I'm terribly tempted to spend some money on something really stupid right now!

Quick, hit me with your best personal finance memes, quotes, blog links, and/or book recommendations!

*** About me: I'm saving 50% of my salary, have zero debt, 7 years worth of living expenses, monthly auto-investments into a low-cost diversified stock fund, a stable job and decent healthcare. So I'm actually doing okay. I just need some external motivation to stay on track sometimes. So go on, motivate me :D

If spending money on "something really stupid" won't impact your savings rate, debt, etc; then why don't you want to do it? For me, savings/investments are a means to achieving a goal (FIRE). That goal has a timeline associated with it and my savings/investments are contributed at a rate I expect to allow me to meet that timeline. As such, whatever money is "left over" after contributing to that goal, is money for me to enjoy life with now. Whether that's "throwing money away on a vacation" or "eating out" or "buying a new motorcycle", I don't feel bad about the spending because I'm only spending my "spending money" and I'm still meeting my saving goals.

TartanTallulah

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #16 on: June 10, 2017, 04:22:01 AM »
I'm feeling a temptation to expose my own weak spot by saying, "Plan a spendy vacation, preferably in the immediate future." If you're able to pin down where you want to go, and why, and look at the numbers, it'll focus your mind on whether you really want it enough.

(Ref: Me and the two weeks of skiing in the Rockies or Colorado that I plan every March for the following January. I live in the UK. By the time I've got to five digits before the decimal point, and the young adult offspring have started yipping about wanting to come too, I realise that I'd be just as happy with a week cycling in Tenerife or, if I really Zen up, a week at work.)

Vacations rock, though, and you aren't left with a houseful of stuff you don't need afterwards.

Adventine

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #17 on: June 10, 2017, 06:54:32 AM »
I'm terribly tempted to spend some money on something really stupid right now!

Quick, hit me with your best personal finance memes, quotes, blog links, and/or book recommendations!

*** About me: I'm saving 50% of my salary, have zero debt, 7 years worth of living expenses, monthly auto-investments into a low-cost diversified stock fund, a stable job and decent healthcare. So I'm actually doing okay. I just need some external motivation to stay on track sometimes. So go on, motivate me :D

If spending money on "something really stupid" won't impact your savings rate, debt, etc; then why don't you want to do it? For me, savings/investments are a means to achieving a goal (FIRE). That goal has a timeline associated with it and my savings/investments are contributed at a rate I expect to allow me to meet that timeline. As such, whatever money is "left over" after contributing to that goal, is money for me to enjoy life with now. Whether that's "throwing money away on a vacation" or "eating out" or "buying a new motorcycle", I don't feel bad about the spending because I'm only spending my "spending money" and I'm still meeting my saving goals.

But spending more money WILL impact my savings rate. I'm not on a barebones budget. I already have a budget for eating out/vacations/shopping built into my monthly spending. I'm grappling with the temptation to go beyond my preset fun budget, for no better reason than I'm feeling restless and trying to self-medicate with excessive spending - which I know, intellectually, is wrong and counterproductive.

Adventine

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #18 on: June 10, 2017, 07:02:01 AM »
I know this restlessness. One way to scratch this persistent itch is to go food shopping. You need it anyway, right? If you're really desperate for a challenge, give yourself a dollar amount and see how much you can get for your money. Then reward yourself with chocolate ;-)

Hope it passes soon!

Sage advice right there!

I did do just that today. It did help :D I keep going back to this thread to reread the advice from all you guys, though!

Linea_Norway

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #19 on: June 10, 2017, 09:09:42 AM »
For other motivation:
Buying fewer items, you do not fill up your house with stuff you don't really need. It is much better to have a clothes cupboard that is not stuffed. You also make the planet a better place by not creating more produce. And you already have a spending budget! Just use that budget and spend it on stuff you do need.

Indeed, shopping for food is a smart idea.

Dicey

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #20 on: June 10, 2017, 09:52:51 AM »
I know this restlessness. One way to scratch this persistent itch is to go food shopping. You need it anyway, right? If you're really desperate for a challenge, give yourself a dollar amount and see how much you can get for your money. Then reward yourself with chocolate ;-)

Hope it passes soon!

Sage advice right there!

I did do just that today. It did help :D I keep going back to this thread to reread the advice from all you guys, though!

Oh, so glad! Funny, when I wrote that, I was visualizing a bunch of yummy fresh ingredients, not packaged crap that you got for nearly free with coupons or apps or whatever. I was going to clarify, but decided either way was okay if it scratched the itch without busting the budget.

Bicycle_B

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #21 on: June 10, 2017, 08:24:12 PM »
Hi Adventine!

In honor of your request, here is this original-ish poem, written for you on this occasion:

Roses are red,
Violets are blue,
Money cannot
Buy a new you.

Feel free to paste into a roses-and-violets image and use as your screen saver.  :)

Bicycle_B

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #22 on: June 10, 2017, 08:32:06 PM »
PS.  I once knew a professional violinist who played with Pavarotti.  She confided that her favorite phase of practice was being bored.  She had learned through painful experience that boredom was the prelude to a phase where her skills and sensitivity rose.  It was a necessary step in her maturation as a violinist.  So now when she reached that point, she knew that something good was coming.

Maybe you're the same way.  You've mastered working, frugality, some level of adult self-determination.  With these no longer being challenges, perhaps your mind is at loose ends, casting about for the right new challenge, experiment, or love. Until you find it, the consumer society is designed to suck that free mind into the consumer machine.  Don't fall for it.  You have a bigger life to live.  Stay strong and live it, clutter free!

Dicey

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #23 on: June 10, 2017, 09:45:19 PM »
^^ Love this! ^^

Adventine

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #24 on: June 11, 2017, 09:33:22 AM »
PS.  I once knew a professional violinist who played with Pavarotti.  She confided that her favorite phase of practice was being bored.  She had learned through painful experience that boredom was the prelude to a phase where her skills and sensitivity rose.  It was a necessary step in her maturation as a violinist.  So now when she reached that point, she knew that something good was coming.

Maybe you're the same way.  You've mastered working, frugality, some level of adult self-determination.  With these no longer being challenges, perhaps your mind is at loose ends, casting about for the right new challenge, experiment, or love. Until you find it, the consumer society is designed to suck that free mind into the consumer machine.  Don't fall for it.  You have a bigger life to live.  Stay strong and live it, clutter free!

You're on to something here. Thanks!

AnnaGrowsAMustache

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #25 on: June 12, 2017, 03:24:32 AM »
I know this feeling all too well! I have a few little things that I save up so I can buy them when this mood hits. For instance, I need a new pair of gumboots. I use them all the time in the garden and mine are currently held together with duct tape. Next time I feel like spending I can quite legitimately go and choose a new pair - maybe floral or polka dot, who knows? I also need to replace some silicon bakeware at some point. It has too many accidental cut marks in it to be completely useful still. But I'll work around it until the shopping bug bites me.

FireHiker

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #26 on: June 12, 2017, 09:43:51 AM »
Umm...will me gloating about ER and all the awesome free time you can have to do anything you want 24/7 365 days a year work? No schedules other than the fun or meaningful ones you impose on yourself. No crappy bosses and annoying coworkers to deal with. No commutes. No early mornings. No early nights. No having to go home from an awesome weekend trip on Sunday nights. No running around like a crazy person to get everything done on weekends. No 2 weeks vacation per year but longgggggg trips instead.

Ummmm OK I can go on forever but bottom line - don't buy that stuff! You don't need it. You really don't even want it. It clutter and stuff and really wont bring you happiness. Because you know it won't likely bring you as much joy as saving that money and watching the FIRE stash grow. Really its true ;-).

Thanks, Spartana! Your post above will help me for sure!

arebelspy

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #27 on: June 24, 2017, 08:39:18 AM »
I'm curious about what you're trying to figure out that's making you restless.

Lots of neat advice in this thread.

IMO, it's definitely worth some introspection to help you figure out why you feel this way, to try and eliminate it.  Some of the mental hacks here are neat, but getting to the root of the issue tends to be the lasting solution that also gives mental peace.  :)
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Adventine

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #28 on: June 24, 2017, 05:02:14 PM »
I'm curious about what you're trying to figure out that's making you restless.

Lots of neat advice in this thread.

IMO, it's definitely worth some introspection to help you figure out why you feel this way, to try and eliminate it.  Some of the mental hacks here are neat, but getting to the root of the issue tends to be the lasting solution that also gives mental peace.  :)

I have been thinking about it. I think a great deal of it comes from the fact that I am in a much better place than I was in when we met last year. Is it just a very human thing to always want more than what we have right now? Is the answer to be found in cultivating a more stoic or Buddhist mindset? I'm still exploring those questions.

arebelspy

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #29 on: June 24, 2017, 05:10:13 PM »
Wanting more doesn't necessarily mean unhappiness.

There is something to be said for being happy wherever you're at.  But I wouldn't automatically say that being dissatisfied with where you are and striving to improve your situation (even while practicing being happy in the moment) is bad.
We are two former teachers who accumulated a bunch of real estate, retired at 29, spent some time traveling the world full time and are now settled with three kids.
If you want to know more about us, or how we did that, or see lots of pictures, this Business Insider profile tells our story pretty well.
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Adventine

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Re: Quick, slap some sense into me!
« Reply #30 on: June 25, 2017, 10:55:09 PM »
Wanting more doesn't necessarily mean unhappiness.

There is something to be said for being happy wherever you're at.  But I wouldn't automatically say that being dissatisfied with where you are and striving to improve your situation (even while practicing being happy in the moment) is bad.

For sure, wanting to improve myself is definitely something good. But the compulsion to spend more on material things (or even comfortable travel) isn't the answer. I'm currently struggling with that compulsion, and go back to this thread every now and then for inspiration and advice :)