Let me ask you a question. Do you think we, as personal finance bloggers, readers and enthusiasts sometimes get a little judge-y of other people’s way of life when it comes to how they spend or save their money?
In the last two weeks I have read not one, but three blogs mentioning to some effect that what they were doing or not doing in their financial world, would alert financial authorities to come revoke their FIRE or Frugality card. Or if they ever ran into MMM in person they might get punched in the face.
I get that most of the bloggers were half-kidding about being judged, but I wonder if we are giving too much credence to what other people think about the way we live our lives, more specifically, our financial lives.
I have always thought that the personal finance world is like a high school. The FIRE bloggers strike me as being the current jocks and cheerleaders of PF High (can anyone think of a funny mascot name, like the “PF Spreadsheets?”). It seems like everyone looks up to them and aspires to be them. They seem to be getting the biggest bulk of attention.
This is great, it really is! I aspire to reach that level myself, but there comes a time when you have to find your own individuality… and rock it!
I know Waffles on Wednesday, one of the bloggers I mentioned and friends of mine IRL, talked about the pressure to side hustle, because it’s what everyone else is doing.
Mr. & Mrs. Groovy are currently building their dream ranch, and have a list of wants to go into their new place, which may or may not be extravagant.
Ruth from Prudence Debt-Free mentioned in a recent post her long commute to work and how she knows MMM and others would scoff at such an idea, because she “should” be living closer to work to be able to walk or bike.
Again, all wrote their posts in a half-joking matter, but there has to be some element of truth, or perhaps guilt going on there?
I have dealt with this guilt myself when it comes to frugality. I get my hair cut (and not at Supercuts) every 6 to 8 weeks. I do this because….well, none of your damn business! lol!
I have taken on a bit of a new philosophy in 2018: It’s to be my own guru, money and otherwise.
That’s right. Move over Tony Robbins! And I’m not planning on being a guru to you or anyone else, just to myself.
I spent 2017 asking WAAAY too many people to give me their thoughts on too many things that I could have figured out myself just fine. Then, when they gave their opinion, I was conflicted even more because they didn’t fully understand my thoughts or where I was coming from.
I’m not saying asking is bad in certain situations, but going forward I plan on being MUCH more selective who I ask for advice and when.
I think most of us know when we veer off course and need to find a different method or path when it comes to spending or saving.
I think there is actually a lot of value in making mistakes, because most of us know what we REALLY want to do anyway. So, my opinion of how someone should or shouldn’t be spending money doesn’t hold that much weight anyway.
I think the best way any of us can get our message out into the world and have others follow is leading by example. Walk the walk and talk the talk. No need to include “And Why You Should Too” in a sub-title in your blog.
Look, if I’m really going off the deep end and making the world’s craziest financial decisions that might really harm myself or someone else, feel free to intervene. And I’ll do the same for you too, okay?
But let’s all of us try to make a commitment to blaze our own paths and do what feels right for our own lives!
Do you ever feel like your getting judged about the way you spend or save your money?