Money is a funny thing. We all have different quirks about money, many of them instilled upon us by the way our families spent and valued it - likely from a very young age. We all think that the way we view money is the right way, of course. It's either ridiculous to spend $4 (probably now more like $6) on a latte every morning, or it's perfectly normal. And chances are, you don't spend much time trying to convince yourself otherwise.
I know I have some pretty bad shopping habits... online shopping in particular. I was blessed with a wonderful grandmother who spoiled me rotten. And to this day, when I want something, I have a hard time telling myself no.
My family was not a traveling family. My family spent money on things like cars and country clubs. As a child, traveling meant riding in the car with Granny to Cincinnati or our summer house in Highlands, North Carolina each year. We sang along to our favorite Natalie Cole album in her Mercedes station-wagon (Route 66 was my song of choice) and stopped at Cracker Barrel for lunch (chicken and dumplings for me, vegetable plate for her). Good times.
Yesterday I said that I love to travel, but for some reason I haven't done enough of it. I think I've figured out that reason - and it's the way I value and spend money.
This might sounds incredibly stupid to some of you - and if so, you're ahead of the game. Bear with me.
The $400 I spent on my last pair of sunglasses... That $400 also purchases my plane ticket to Guatemala this winter.
I like my YSL aviators, sure... but they are disposable. Here today, gone tomorrow. They could be sat on, stolen, thrown out the window in a moment's notice. And who cares, really? I guess I thought I cared, at one point...
But now what I'm thinking about is a plane ticket. A trip. The chance to immerse myself into a new culture. To see beautiful, amazing things and learn from interesting people.
Now, those sunglasses feel ridiculous.
I understand that it takes more than just a plane ticket to travel. And maybe, travel isn't what you're after. As someone launching a new business, I am even moreso moved by this new thought process. I'm learning quickly that there are smarter ways to spend the dollars that I earn.
Dig deep into your bank statements. Look at how you're spending. Think about what it is you want - what really matters to you? Maybe cutting that daily latte can help you get the new MacBook you've been dreaming about. Or maybe, that latte adds enough joy to your days to make it worth the money. The point is, you've thought it through, and you're spending your money the way you truly want to spend it - and not just because it's the way you've been spending it for years.
As the wise man says... "Now double your money and make a stack!"