I don’t think its any coincidence that most people who start to follow a minimalist lifestyle, also become more frugal and end up “minimising” their finances as well as their life. And vice versa.
I was no exception.
Around the same time that Fate/The Universe/God (circle one, depending on who or what guides you) would have all things ‘minimalism’ start peaking my interest, was also the same time that I realised we were in a really shitty financial situation. Like, REALLY shitty. The kind of shitty that keeps you up at night, gives you panic attacks and results in your crying to your Dad on the phone asking to borrow money.
My dad gave me some wise words, basically saying ‘the problem with wanting everything now, is that it takes your joy and puts it just out of reach, always in the future’ (although his words were not quite as eloquently put). But he was right. We had two kids under 5, just renovated our home, then decided to get a pool (#noregrets), booked a trip overseas – all within 12 months. No wonder we had debt coming out of our ears and had were up the proverbial creek.
Keeping Up With The Jones…. Instant Gratification… call it what you will, but our desire to have EVERYTHING now, was stealing our joy. We had turned our home into our dream castle, yet I had never felt more depressed or less fulfilled.
I knew I didn’t want to be in this position. Ever. Again. I searched Pinterest for budgeting tips (where else would you go for solid financial advice?) and came across Dave Ramsey‘s Total Money Makeover and realised just how SIMPLE it could be. Easy? No! Simple? Yes, really!
The more I read, followed and listened to all things Minimalism, the more I was able to stick to my budget and really open my eyes to realise that we don’t need things to fulfil us.
Paying cash (or the debit card equivalent) for something I needed made me really think about how much I really wanted it.
Being intentional with my spending means that I get more joy out of buying a carefully considered item, then I did walking out of Kmart with a trolley full of stuff.
I’ve just started listening to Scott Pape’s The Barefoot Investor, as it contains more Aussie specific advice – although the principles of The BFI & Dave Ramsey are similar.
We still have a looonnng way to go before we are debt free and at financial peace, but one thing is for sure… not wanting to be surrounded by mindless stuff, has definitely helped curb the credit card funding shopping spree’s!
Perhaps the Notorious BIG wouldn’t have the same “Mo Money, Mo Problems” if he followed more of a minimalist lifestyle???
Does anyone else have a favourite financial guru I should know about?