Is Delaying Spending Delaying Happiness?

by Adam on October 21, 2010

Is delaying spending and saving money delaying happiness?

When you think about saving money does it feel like a chore?

Do you feel like when you do save that you’re giving up on something in the present? When you put money away in one of your savings accounts do you see it as delaying happiness now for a better tomorrow?

Living Like No One Else –Sacrificing to win

Within some circles it’s something of a status symbol to be ‘sacrificing to win’. Certainly a strong determination is great for getting out of debt and battling credit card companies but such a strong resolve can only last so long. It’s much harder to maintain a focused intensity when you’re simply saving money. After all, there’s lots of great ways to spend your hard-earned cash. And it’s even harder to save if, when you do, you feel you’re depriving yourself by doing the ‘right thing’ by setting money aside.

Emotions not mechanics

The mechanics of saving are easy. You put money in a savings account and leave it there. But it doesn’t always stay there or even get there in the first place. To achieve the right balance between spending and saving you need to know your emotional triggers and understand your spending patterns. You may be your own worst enemy, but crucially you can’t be too hard on yourself or you’ll be put off from saving for the important things in life.

Save More Yet Stay Happy

You may have heard the expression that “money can’t buy happiness” but many people still try! To truly live the motto you need to ensure that your spending and your happiness are less correlated and therefore your savings can grow without feeling deprived. This can be done in a number of ways like:

Ultimately to be successful at saving money month in, month out, you can’t spend your time feeling deprived. No matter how many ‘save money hacks’ you find online, you must remember to not stop spending to such an extent that it makes you miserable. If you do you are acting against what saving money is ultimately all about: enriching your life by increasing your choices and options available to you in life.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

iamtheworkingpoor

From a lower income perspective, being able to save gives you a feeling of empowerment. You can make changes such as a move for better employment opportunities, or taking the the time to further your education. So many others do not have the options that a saver does.

I don’t have any luxury items I have to spend money on, however if I really want to do something I find a way to make it happen on my budget. I’ve seen quite a few deaths recently of family, friends, and co-workers. I don’t mean to be morbid but you have to live your life as if you could be gone soon. Visit your children, have dinner parties, and walk on the beach with your significant other. Life is all to brief, especially for those of us without health insurance. Save like mad and make wise money moves, but remember to enjoy life as well.

badmash

I just signed up to your blogs rss feed. Will you post more on this subject?

Adam

@IATWP. Great comment -it *is* empowering. And focusing on that is the key -if you are only saving money to be ‘good’ and as something you should be doing, then you’re more likely to ‘fall off the wagon’ and not be able to use your savings for what they were originally intended for -living the best life that you can.

@Badmash -Thank you and yes, Magical Penny isn’t going anywhere! 🙂

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