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We do buy what we want to, so it's not like we are living super frugally, but we are still spending much below them because we tend to spend where we find value and not on things that we don't highly value.

And I suspect you don't find value in things that other people give status to, like expensive cars, or expensive restaurants, and definitely not clothing.


This. MND was very influential in my thinking on asset building. When I read it, I knew I would never be a millionaire, because I did too many things wrong. I didn't marry someone more frugal than myself. I didn't stay married for life. I not only didn't own a business, I had no interest in being an entrepreneur.

But my values lined up with many of the MND values, particularly in not spending money on things that I don't value. To me, a car is transportation. In 2007, when used cars were too costly to justify buying one, I couldn't justify buying a Prius instead of a Hyundai Accent because at $4 gasoline, it would take 180,000 miles to break even on the capital cost. 8 years later, I've driven ~65,000 miles on that Accent. I'll be keeping it at least two more years, more if it keeps performing well.

It took me a full year to get used to the idea that I had a net worth in 7 digits. No, I'm not as wealthy as the people Stanley and Danko profiled, even if you don't take inflation into account. But I have enough.

It's not about an unsavory, hyper-cheap lifestyle. It's about an attitude of not wasting money on things that aren't of value, and not being impressed with status as a value. Sometimes, paying a premium price for higher quality is worth every penny. Frequently, paying a premium price gets only a tiny amount of quality with the big helping of marketed status. The attitude is about making sure I get good value for my money, not about spending the least possible.

So, like so many, I chose what I spend money on, and what I chose isn't always what others might value.

And this. The biggest waste of money is buying for other people's values instead of your own. Learn to buy your own values, and there's a decent chance you'll have enough even if you aren't the MND.

Patzer
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