My new relationship with money

I don’t think of money the way I used to think of money just 6 months ago.

6 months ago, I’d walk into a mall thinking of what I could potentially buy to make myself happy.

Today, I walk into a mall only to buy what I need (if I need a stick of butter to cook dinner with I buy a stick of butter, full stop).

6 months ago, I’d walk into a bookstore and buy any book I wanted. Usually I’d buy at least two books or more. Sometimes three or four at one go. It was easy for me to spend $100 at the bookstore per visit.

Today, I borrow all my books from the public library. Most of the books I want to read are available in the library anyway. If it’s not, I don’t read it (there are so many other books in the world to read). Or I buy it on Kindle, so I save 30% or 40% or sometimes 50% off the paperback price. But even this happens only rarely nowadays.

6 months ago, I’d not blink an eye about spending $800 on a painting or $1,000 on a foldable bike. I needed these things, I’d tell myself. I needed them so I could try my hand at art collecting or be able to cycle to the swimming pool.

Today, I don’t buy random big ticket items anymore. I just don’t.

Have I become cheap? Not really. It’s just that I have experienced a crucial mindshift with regards to money. I no longer think of money as a currency I can use to buy things with; now I think of it as resources that I’d gained through the exchange of my own very precious life hours.

All the money I have, I have had to work for them. I’d to put in hours under the sun or in the studio, managing clients, shooting, editing. I had spent time – days and weeks and months and years of my life – in order to earn these money. Time that I can never get back.

So every time I buy something, I remind myself that the money I have now is actually time I can never get back.

It makes me think twice about what to buy.

Should I buy the latest iPad Pro or should I use it to, say, buy the freedom to not work for a month? In that month I can connect with my loved ones, travel somewhere to recharge, work on a passion project, etc.

The choice is obvious to me.

4 thoughts on “My new relationship with money

  1. When we save and not buy the latest gadget, camera, car or luxury item, it doesn’t mean that we don’t spend the money.

    We have already spent it. But we spent it on our future, we spent it on buying our freedom.

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