Truth Bomb Tuesday: This is a condition that a lot of people have
Someone shared something with me that really struck a chord. It went like this:
The best New Year’s resolution I ever made was to start devouring all my nicest things, and save no small pleasure for an unspecified future. Now I burn the good candles, wear the expensive perfume at home, scribble imperfectly in pretty notebooks. You can’t pin joy like a moth.
I love this. (Sorry, don’t have a source for it now…)
And this is the secret about the people I work with that surprises everybody: for every person I work with who spends too much money, there’s another person who doesn’t spend enough!
It’s easy to imagine the archetype of the person who’s too loose with money. They blow it on silly things, rack up the credit card debt etc.
But it’s hard to imagine the person who isn’t living their best life because they’re not spending enough. That’s just good financial discipline, right?
And look, it definitely is much less of a problem if you have too much money in your deposit account, than if you’re drowning in credit card debt.
But you still have a problem. You still have something holding you back from living your best life.
And that’s because you’re stuck in fear mode.
Generally, people who don’t spend enough – and I’m talking here about people who deny themselves pleasures they can easily afford – are doing that from a place of scarcity – from a belief that there isn’t enough now and there won’t be enough in the future.
But it’s not just about money. It’s about all nice things and all nice experiences.
Psychologists call it “deferred happiness syndeme”. It’s the tendency we all have to put off doing the things that make us happy to a later date.
But that later date never comes and so we never get around to being happy.
It’s very common.
And it makes evolutionary sense. The organism that forgot to prepare for winter died. The organism that over-prepared and needlessly put off doing things that made it happy did not die. It did just fine.
And so biologically, we have a tendency to over-prepare, over-save and over-hoard. It’s just biological design.
But we should make time for happiness today.
Because happiness is an end in itself, but it’s also incredibly nourishing. It’s what makes life worth living.
Now obviously I’m not saying go an empty your bank account and blow it in a single bender.
But is definitely worth asking yourself the question: Am I deferring my happiness?
The answer is probably yes.
And then ask yourself, how can I bring more happiness into my life right now (in a way that’s still consistent with my longer-term financial goals)?
Use the good bath crystals. Break open the fresh note-book. Drink the nice bottle of wine.
Life is for the living.
No point saving happy til life is over.