By Nikki Willhite
It is said that we spend the first half of our life accumulating
possessions, and the second half giving them away. This is true for most people.
Why do we have to have so many things? Why do we buy things only
to turn around and sell them for a fraction of the cost we paid for them at a
We not only buy too much, but we often go into debt doing so.
Self control when it comes to money is at an all time low. Our children seem to
think that they should have everything that we have, ignoring the fact that some
of our possessions have taken years to accumulate or to be able to afford.
Have you ever found yourself jealous of something someone else
owns? How about a house, a car, clothes, jewelry, tools, appliances, furniture,
a big screen television, computer, etc. etc. etc.
Do you have some preconceived notions that you just have to have
a certain item (whether you need it or not) just because your family had it?
When we were first married my husband use to stop and look at every Grandfather
clock he saw. He said he’d always wanted one.
Yes, they are lovely. However, a simple wrist watch accomplishes
the same task of telling you the time. If we had a LOT of money, then we would
have perhaps purchased one. With our finances, it would be an unaffordable
All families are different. Some have one television, some have
half a dozen. Same have many computers and cars. We all spend our money in
different ways. Some people have to have the latest- whatever it is. Their
clothes must be new, they consider their furniture old in 5 years, they replace
their cars often.
If you want to live like this, you will have a lot of help!
Every newspaper ad, magazine, billboard and television commercial will urge you
to act on these impulses. If, however, you wish to live frugally, you will be
When you pay cash for an item at the mall, you will be asked if
you have a credit card and urged to apply for one with the promise of a discount
on your purchase. Mail will be in your mailbox often urging you to take out
credit cards and home equity loans. You will not find any role models on
television either. You are on your own.
Only you can decide what is important for you to own. When you
get older you realize that when you have so much, it is just more to worry
about; things break and things are stolen. It is more work having to keep things
clean. You learn when you are older to choose your things more carefully.
Decide what you need to make you comfortable. Learn to
distinguish between your "wants" and your "needs". Don’t be so strict that you
take all the fun out of life. Everyone should have a few things that they just
love, even if they are not practical. Just try and develop simple tastes!