Your Money or Your Life? Life is Short!

December 18, 2006

In the second edition of Your Money or Your Life we get three reminders of how to balance spending money and living life, compliments of The Simple Dollar, One Frugal Girl, and Mapgirl.

Life is Short
I often get so caught up in the rush of the daily grind that it’s easy to overlook or take for granted the most important things in life. It’s nice to take a step back and reflect on what we really want out of life. Trent asks us, what would we do if we only had a year to live? He challenges us to figure out what the cost would be of doing only those things most important to us for a whole year. Then come up with a plan to save up the money to live that life!

A whole year at a time is a big chunk to bite off. A few “minor” issues such as insurance coverage, mortgage payments, and buying diapers come to mind. It’s a good idea though. I think I’ll do this on a smaller scale, maybe do 3-5 weeks in a row every year. Thanks for the motivation Trent!

Work vs. Family
High salaries and recognition are nice but at what cost? One Frugal Girl makes the list a second week in a row as she reminds us that salary is not the most important factor. In a world where salary and recognition are often of utmost importance, she notes how we often miss ballet recitals or little league games for work and questions whether it’s worth the “rewards of plushier offices and more money.”

With a new son, this issue is front and center in my life. Long nights and weekends at the office are no longer something I’m interested in. Whether it affects my career is no longer a major concern, being with the new little guy is what matters most!

Gift Giving
Mapgirl reminds us that spending money on a gift for someone you love is only part of gift giving and that how much you spend is not the most important part. She asks:

“Do you equate the value of a gift with the amount of love the giver is showing? I was always taught that it is the thought that counts. I don’t think those are only comforting words for a disappointing gift. I think when a gift has been given careful thought, it really shows.”

An appropriate topic this Christmas season. Hopefully I can give gifts to make my family happy, not make the retailers rich!


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Ben Edwards, the founder of Money Smart Life, saved up enough to buy a Nintendo back when he was 12 years old. When he used the money to buy shares of Wal-Mart stock instead, he knew he wasn't like the other kids... His addiction to personal finance has paid off for his family and now he's helping you to afford the life that you want. Check him out on the web at Google Plus, Twitter and Facebook.

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3 Responses to Your Money or Your Life? Life is Short!

  • pension

    Money is not everything – you need to enjoy your life. Buy a bicycle and ride to work and the shops. Saves money on fuel and transport and keeps you healthy!

  • mapgirl

    Hi! Thanks for the link! I didn’t find out about it till today. 🙂 Since gift giving takes place year round, (say like on Father’s Day, today) the advice holds true.

  • Michael M @ freshome

    No I’m stepping away from keyboard to think about this question “what would we do if we only had a year to live?” …this is the second time today when this blog make me think about something.