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Thread: Your best simple living advice?

  1. #11
    Senior Member bae's Avatar
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    View every dollar as a potential income stream, and think about that carefully before spending it.

    If I am thinking about spending $10 on a scone and a cup of coffee at Starbucks, I look at that $10 and think....hmmm, $10 invested prudently will throw off 5% a year, forever. That scone and coffee will cost me 50 cents a year, until I die, then my children and grandchildren and greatgrandchildren will continue to pay 50 cents a year. Forever.

    So, do I *really* need that poorly-roasted swill, and dreadfully fatty baked goodie?

  2. #12
    Senior Member SteveinMN's Avatar
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    My nominations:

    "There is enough." This ties into the non-comparison model. Your income; your dwelling; your possessions -- they may not be new, they may not be as nice as others', they may not be what you'd want if you had a blank check for all of it. But it is enough. The income (should) cover the necessities of life (which probably does not include The Disney Channel or a top-of-the-line smartphone or a Coach purse). The dwelling should keep you warm and dry and relatively safe from external danger and should contain objects you enjoy. Your pots and pans may be cheap and mismatched but they function even they're not the newest set from Calphalon. Your car may not be stylish or even undented but it gets you where you need to go in relative safety and it sure beats mass transit in many areas and the old horse-and-buggy from ages past. With this as a baseline, I think it's easier to not get wrapped around the axle of keeping up with the Joneses.

    The Law of Attraction. The idea that the way to achieve a goal is to state the goal and then think about how people successful at that goal do things. "I live simply" -- and people who live simply try to not make a daily habit out of buying and drinking a "Vente" half-caf soy mint frappucino. "I live simply" -- and people who live simply have -- and prioritize -- time to do things they enjoy doing (with family, in hobbies, etc.). "I live simply" -- and people who live simply don't spend every dollar they make, finding ways to stretch their money or at least spend it on things of greater value.
    Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome. - Booker T. Washington

  3. #13
    Senior Member kib's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bae View Post
    View every dollar as a potential income stream, and think about that carefully before spending it.

    If I am thinking about spending $10 on a scone and a cup of coffee at Starbucks, I look at that $10 and think....hmmm, $10 invested prudently will throw off 5% a year, forever. That scone and coffee will cost me 50 cents a year, until I die, then my children and grandchildren and greatgrandchildren will continue to pay 50 cents a year. Forever.

    So, do I *really* need that poorly-roasted swill, and dreadfully fatty baked goodie?
    This is a really neat way to look at wants-spending! Not "can I afford it", but "how much will I lose."

  4. #14
    Senior Member Miss Cellane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveinMN View Post
    My nominations:

    "There is enough." This ties into the non-comparison model. Your income; your dwelling; your possessions -- they may not be new, they may not be as nice as others', they may not be what you'd want if you had a blank check for all of it. But it is enough. The income (should) cover the necessities of life (which probably does not include The Disney Channel or a top-of-the-line smartphone or a Coach purse). The dwelling should keep you warm and dry and relatively safe from external danger and should contain objects you enjoy. Your pots and pans may be cheap and mismatched but they function even they're not the newest set from Calphalon. Your car may not be stylish or even undented but it gets you where you need to go in relative safety and it sure beats mass transit in many areas and the old horse-and-buggy from ages past. With this as a baseline, I think it's easier to not get wrapped around the axle of keeping up with the Joneses.

    The Law of Attraction. The idea that the way to achieve a goal is to state the goal and then think about how people successful at that goal do things. "I live simply" -- and people who live simply try to not make a daily habit out of buying and drinking a "Vente" half-caf soy mint frappucino. "I live simply" -- and people who live simply have -- and prioritize -- time to do things they enjoy doing (with family, in hobbies, etc.). "I live simply" -- and people who live simply don't spend every dollar they make, finding ways to stretch their money or at least spend it on things of greater value.
    And along with this, I would add that part of living simply for me is so that you have enough to do/own those things that are most important to you. Your house may have only one bathroom, but you spent the money on skiing trips with your kids, making memories for a lifetime, instead of remodeling. You live in a tiny house, but you travel to Europe yearly/every other year. You drive a beat-up old car, but you go to the theater whenever there's a show. You wear old clothes, but you have a house that has room for the people you love in it.

    It's not about giving up everything. It's about making choices about what to have and what to not have. Says the woman with 35 year old Revere Ware pots and pans, a dented up 15 year old car, and money in the bank.

  5. #15
    Senior Member SteveinMN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miss Cellane View Post
    It's not about giving up everything. It's about making choices about what to have and what to not have. Says the woman with 35 year old Revere Ware pots and pans, a dented up 15 year old car, and money in the bank.
    Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome. - Booker T. Washington

  6. #16
    Senior Member ctg492's Avatar
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    Live within your means without denying yourself of everything.

  7. #17
    Senior Member JaneV2.0's Avatar
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    I've always thought of money as wrinkled green paper you can exchange for shiny things. I've never really seen the point of hoarding it. At the same time, I'm a responsible person who has always saved money, and sometimes has a surplus. I've never been anything like a miser--more like a wastrel--and I'm OK with that. I pinch pennies in areas that don't matter to me so that I can spend freely in others. The only advice I can give is--as others have said--keep your eyes on the prize. After I had worked for fifteen years, and I was practically suicidal from hating it--and ready to quit and turn myself over to the fates, my company came up with a "thirty years and out" retirement plan. At that moment, I steeled myself for another fifteen years, gritted my teeth and managed to leave before I was fifty, with a pension. Knowing what I know now, I'd do things differently career-wise, but that's what life is all about--learning.

  8. #18
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    I really appreciate all these great insights!

    I will work them into the conversations over the next several weeks of classes.

  9. #19
    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Just heard this on my daily motivational video:

    "Address the Wanting Mind." (This is from a book called "It's Not About the Money" by Brent Kessel).

    Fox and the grapes. We're so interested in that shiny illusion that we think will make us happy that we sacrifice the real thing that's already in our hands.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
    www.silententry.wordpress.com

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