This might be one of the most seemingly ridiculous statements, but there is a line in the great movie “Fight Club” that resonated with me so much that I often repeat it to myself before I make a major purchase. I use it as a guide post to help make sure I don’t ever “get in over my head.” Check out this bit of financial wisdom imparted by the Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt):
“The things you own, end up owning you…” – Tyler Durden, Fight Club. Awesome.
It’s hard to be self-reliant when we extend 30 years of our future income to a fixed expense, isn’t it? It’s hard to be self-reliant when you straddle yourself with debt to buy stuff that we really don’t need (gadgets, fancy clothing, boats, etc.).
How many times have we felt “owned” by many of the material purchasing decisions we have made in the past? Can’t quit the job you hate because of a big mortgage and/or car payment? How about buying clothes, or the latest gadget, or going out to eat too often only to find out at the end of the month, once that credit card bill arrives, you have the feeling of being trapped by debt. Man, its going to take 3 months to pay for that 90 minute dinner. Ugh.
Imagine, for a moment, if you bought everything with cash? How would you feel? Would your life be different? Is that even possible?
I would say yes to all the above. Imagine the freedom that you would have to pursue your life’s passion and true calling if you were not saddled with a large amount of monthly “fixed” debt costs. Would your relationships be better if you weren’t stressed out as much about money? Would you have more time with your children or partner? Would you be more at peace?
Listen, I have debt, just like most everyone. I have a mortgage and a car payment. If I was to only have 1 type of debt it would be a mortgage thus I am working to pay the car off as fast as possible. I looked at my life and budget and realized that I was spending money on a lot of “stuff” that I really didn’t need or use or make me a better person. I just bought “stuff”…not sure why.
So I am going to commit this week of having a big “online” garage sale and begin selling this “stuff.” I am then going to use the proceeds and help pay off the car faster.
I think in order for us to really Fix America, we need to get our personal financial house in order. We CANNOT look to the government to lead by example with this since they are absolutely THE BEST in living outside their means.
Too much debt can ruin your true potential, wreak havoc on relationships and contribute to a huge amount of stress. We have enough problems in America to fix and we need everyone to focus. It will be easier to focus, once we clear out all the clutter and materialistic crap we really don’t need.
PS…if you want to see the whole, rated R scene click here…it is truly an awesome scene and speaks directly to our materialistic ways….
Week #7: February 13-19:
#7: I Can downsize my life if I am stressed out about money and struggling to pay the bills. I Can create a budget to live within my means, sell the fancy car or boat, and make purchasing decisions based on what I need, not what I want. I Can achieve financial peace of mind.