There is a subprime lender that seductively advertises:We see more than an easy label and a credit score. We see homeowners with commitment and the courage to keep dreaming.That certainly has a positive ring to it. Perhaps even a bit noble. But has anyone ever bothered to deconstruct those words?Translated from ad-speak into plain English, what this basically says is: We know you've already ruined your credit. More to the point, we know that your spending habits are governed by your desires--not a sense of fincncial responsibility--and we wouldn't have it any other way. So go ahead and indulge yourself. Actually, this is just a cruder version of the words, "You're worth it!" or "You deserve it!" that have appeared in so many advertisements. Still, it is depressing to think that so many advertisers do not view us as sentient, rational beings. And even more depressing to realize that they are so often right.
"I deserve it."These three words have gotten me into so much trouble. I am about 100 lbs overweight, and I previously had $40K in cc debt. Both problems are due to a lack of discipline on my part. With my finances, I could be LBMM most of the time, and then really blow it on a huge purchase because I deserved it. Other times I would be good with the really big purchases, but splurge on small things because I deserved it.Food is the same way for me. I have too often bought fast food because I've had a rough day and I deserved it. I have eated garbage for too long, because it tastes good and I deserve it.Finally, I've decided I deserve to be financially stable. My husband deserves to retire before he's too old to enjoy it. My son deserves to go to college. I don't want to spend my money on the silly stuff that marketing people think will make me happy. Because in that shift of attitude, my cc debt is gone and my savings are increasing. I am now trying to have the same view toward diet and exercise. I don't deserve fast food; I deserve to be healthy. It's not that I will sacrifice living to accumulate wealth. I will not give up all junk food. I believe an occasional indulgence is a good thing. I just need to find a balance.Leia
It's not that I will sacrifice living to accumulate wealth. I will not give up all junk food. I believe an occasional indulgence is a good thing. I just need to find a balance.Part of LBYM is the "L"...and no Twisted Ben & Jerry's chocolate chip cookie dough/chocolate fudge brownie is certainly no "L":-)
Leia,Excellent post! The operative word is "balance." You're so right: One should not become a miser or an ascetic, in homage to the future; but it is also unwise to live paycheck-to-paycheck, and hope for the best as regarding both emergencies and retirement.I think you have a very healthy and intelligent perspective: Enjoy life now; just don't ignore the future. Best wishes to you and your entire family.--Phil
"Seek freedom and become a slave to your desires. Seek discipline and discover your liberty." - Quote from Frank Herbert's Dune (can't remember which book)
Leia (cool Star Wars name)I've done the overspending game too. For me "I deserve it" usually meant "my self-esteem is low right now so maybe this outside bauble will make me feel better". Of coarse once you see your debt, it becomes a downward spiral. I finally got to the point where if I was tempted with an impulse buy I could ask myself "which will feel better, buying this or being out of debt", and 99% of the time didn't end up buying whatever I was holding.
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