I was talking with a friend over dinner about what I’m currently doing. His response?
“Oh, personal finance guru (sarcasm dripping in buckets), what is the best money advice you can give to me?”
I sat there thinking for a few minutes about all the money related topics I discuss on a daily basis here and on the main website and then kind of blurted out the following without really thinking:
“Buy freedom with your money, not things.”
What I said even caught me by surprise as I have never really pronounced anything quite like that in my writings so far. While I don’t know if it is the best personal finance advice I could give, I think it would make the top ten – it’s something that I’ve always thought about but never found a good way to express. No matter how much advertisers try to convince you that the things you buy will make you happy, it’s a false promise. Freedom to do more of the things you want to do with the people you want to do them with, however, can bring you true and lasting happiness.
Part of the biggest challenge for everyone trying to get their personal finances in order is to learn what is truly the most important things for them (even though that might not sound like anything to do with personal finance, once you have that solidly in mind you know why you are working as hard as you are and where you want that money to go). This is one reason that goals are so important in regard to your personal finances – not for the money itself, but to be able to use the money you have saved and invested to do the things that you truly want to do.
I’m sure that many of you are rolling you eyes while you read a personal finance blogger getting a bit philosophical, but take a few minutes to consider it. When you spend money, would you rather spend it to purchase more freedom to do what you want, or to buy more things? If you answer freedom, then why are you buying all the things that you are buying? That’s my thought for you to consider for today:
Should I buy freedom with my money, or things….?