One of my favorite posts on this blog is the one that is titled “It’s Ok to Spend Money on Stuff You Love”, simply because it vindicates my position in the standoff that I currently have going on with my spouse. I feel that it’s ok to spend on the things that we both enjoy while he insists that they’re frivolous expenses and that we need to save our money for the future. While I see the wisdom in his point of view, I also feel that the money we earn after much hardship and struggle is best used in a timely manner.
For example, going away on a much-needed vacation will definitely drain our bank balance by quite a number of dollars. But I feel that it’s money spent on a worthwhile cause, especially because we’re both still young enough to feel and experience the romance of travel and appreciate the beauty of the places we visit. Now if I were to go along with my spouse and save the money instead, we would have enough and more in our bank when we retire. But the problem is that we would have lost out on our youth and may no longer feel the desire to travel and enjoy new experiences.
There’s a time to spend money, and when you lose this opportunity, you lose out on life. Sure, you do need to be careful, cautious and thrifty, but what’s the use of hoarding away money that you’re not going to spend in your lifetime, or rather, when you have enough life left in you? In my opinion, it’s ok to spend money on what you love, even if the expense may seem frivolous, if:
- You don’t have pressing debts that must be settled as soon as possible.
- You don’t have to save up for your kids’ college or other foreseeable future expenses.
- You have a pretty decent nest egg saved up for emergencies.
- You have a reasonably secure and well-paying job.
In general, your overall expenditure must not exceed your overall income for a certain period of time if you want to lead a stress-free and debt-free life. It’s basic mathematics, but unfortunately, not many of us are good at it. We spend more than we earn, we don’t follow basic finance rules (such as the one that says that any money borrowed using a credit card or otherwise earns interest that must be paid back as well, so it’s wise to pay off debts at the earliest), and we don’t keep track of our expenditure. This is why we’re always in a bind when it comes to money.
But if you’re financially savvy and have enough to get by comfortably, I see no reason to scrimp and save at every point of your life. You earn to live well, so spend money when it’s most needed and best enjoyed – that is money well spent!
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