Monday, August 10, 2015

Contentment

Recently I heard "Debt is a sign of discontentment." And of course it struck a chord with me. I grew up with parents in debt constantly. Big mortgages, car payments, and LOTS of credit card debt. In addition to the debt, I was regularly reminded that we still couldn't keep up with the Joneses. We never had "enough" and money was always tight.

I carried that mindset for a long time because I didn't realize there was another way to think. The more I learned from people who weren't in debt, it was still a hard habit to break, especially when I felt so behind in both income and debt payments.

But hearing "Debt is a sign of discontentment" explained so much to me. It wasn't a numbers game anymore. It was personal. Mental and emotional discontentment has spurred so many trips to Target or the mall or Amazon.com. So it didn't matter how many jobs I worked to get out of debt, I was always going to stay in debt if I was discontent about areas of my life.

I felt a shift in mindset when I listened to Dave Ramsey speak those words on his radio show. What would it take for me to be content? Oftentimes I had what I NEEDED but I still wasn't where I wanted to be so I would spend to fill the gap. And sometimes what I was missing wasn't material, yet I'd go shopping to fill the void. It ended up being counter-productive and set me back with credit card debt.

I got a new job in July and that came with a new paycheck that provides the cushion I needed to live within my means.

And the more I focus on the mindset of having what I need, I am finding several ways to make sure that my life fits into my paycheck, rather than trying to expand my paycheck to fit into my life. 

Now every day I remind myself that I have everything I need and a lot of what I want. Life is far from perfect but I am very fortunate and spending more than I have is not going to make me more fortunate.

2 comments:

  1. Such a good post! I love you said everything it's so true. I have my fair share of debt trust me but sometimes I get jealous of family members who are always shopping and getting new things and my mom always reminds me that it's a costir then to have those things. They aren't paying with cash so it's not all that it seems.

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  2. Oh my - this post really struck a chord with me and has changed my perspective on a few things regarding personal finance. Thank you for sharing, Katie!

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