In 2018, I posted monthly about my spending tracking. After feeling like it had become too much the focus of my blog, I moved away from it in 2019, although I continued to track spending (along with virtually everything else quantifiable in my life as I do). But with 2019 having come to a close already, I figured I should at least share how my spending went, and how I hope to continue to make strides forward in 2020. Below is another instalment of The Resolution 2019: Wrap-up. Better late than never? I hope so.Continue reading “The Resolution 2019: Wrap-up”
For what’s money without happiness?
Or hard times without the people you love?-J. Cole, Love Yourz
No, this is not a discussion of some hip new ETF that I have found. Instead, I wanted to bring to your attention some recent research that may change the way we quantify happiness, which has all sorts of implications, even for you and your own Freedom goals.
The #FIRE community was borne out of a call-to-action to the middle class to reconsider the things they value most and to come to terms with the fact that a rich life was measurable by so much more than simply money. Bloggers like Mr. Money Mustache and Early Retirement Extreme preached logical frugality, simple indulgence, mindful and constant skill development and a consideration of the impact our actions have on others and the planet itself. It was a call to wake up from our sleep-walk towards endless economic growth at all costs no matter how unhappy and unhealthy it makes us and to re-direct our resources in order to allow ourselves to become the master of our own domains again.
A lot of this sentiment still exists within the community, but in some corners – and perhaps in those that overlap somewhat with the more traditional world of Personal Finance – it has simply become a collection of affluent middle class people telling stories of how well their ETFs and Index Funds have been performing (during the best 10 years in history for such investments mind you) and then reporting their net worth to each other on a monthly basis. A lot of it is hardly meaningful, and seems to have let go of the ‘why’ of it all. I see very few to zero ‘Charitable Givings’ or ‘Ecological Impact’ reports provided to summarize their social and natural capital gains or losses alongside their ‘Net Worth Update’ articles reporting their financial capital.Continue reading “The Happiness Index”
Do you ask what the proper limit is to wealth? It is first to have what is necessary, and second, to have what is enough.Seneca, Letter II.
I spent a lot of time last year writing about spending. I tracked my spending religiously, and I still do. And I focused a lot on the numbers; the outcome over the process, if you will. So when I didn’t achieve my original goals, I adjusted the target. Three times. And then I still didn’t quite meet it.
And no matter how you slice it, when we focus on the goal over the process, it stings when we don’t reach our goals. It’s uninspiring and de-motivating, to say the least.Continue reading “How to Change Your Mind: Spending”