If you’re like me you can admit that many of your motives and fears come from money. I think this should be okay to admit and I encourage you to open up a little bit here especially since we all use currency for just about everything in life.
And even though our money is no longer backed by gold and is basically just paper that the government (or should I say the Federal Reserve) prints out it still saves us lots of time when we want to buy a good or a service because it’s the fastest way to exchange goods and services. It’s basically a tool for trade.
If you’re anything like most people I know, you probably have had a love/hate relationship with money. My challenge and intention with this article is to get you to love and appreciate money if that’s something you’re struggling with. Why? Because it makes sense to. I mean, why have a bad relationship with something that you know you’re going to continue using everyday?
Sometimes I feel that living simply has this connotation that says, “I don’t care about money and guess what.. I hardly even need it anymore.” And you know what.. I LOVE and APPRECIATE that because it empowers us and gives us more choice in life. So if you got that mindset, too, then HIGH FIVE!
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The thing is though that I have friends who swear they’re not motivated by money, yet they work like 60 hours a week for a boss who they say they hate. That isn’t right! It’s like a living contradiction. If my buddy wasn’t motivated by money, he’d quit and go work somewhere else. Either that or he’s stuck in the rat race. Hmmm.
I guess that’s where simple living becomes powerful, doesn’t it? It can allow us to transition out of the rat race and into a life where we take control of our present and future. It’s a place where we can create more discretionary income, more free time, and re-prioritize our lives to create more happiness not just for ourselves but for our loved ones too.
I just find it kind of sad when some folks who embrace the simple life begin to ignore money. It’s like they still hate it even though they found a better way for themselves. With simplicity comes less dependence on just about everything which can create extra money, less stress and more happiness. But continuing to hate money doesn’t fix your long-term relationship with it and prevents you from enjoying complete abundance.
So I’m encouraging you to have a little love for money again if that’s something you’ve been struggling with. And at the same time I’m asking you to redefine the meaning of the word rich. I mean, what does rich mean for you? Is it all about money, really? I doubt it.. If you’re like me it’s much more about having freedom, the ability to make more choices, to spend more time with our loved ones, to enjoy time in nature, to have hobbies, and to enjoy a rewarding career.
For me, it’s about growing rich in time, relationships, experiences, and money. Why do you want to live simply and what does wealth mean to you?
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If one lives a very simple, sustainable lifestyle, there is no need for money. Then again, if everyone helps each other out of love (not trade), money becomes obsolete even with complicated, unsustainable lifestyles.
Money might not buy happiness but lack of it can sure cause misery. Personally,I just want enough money that I can meet my basic needs and not be a burden on my family as I age. I’ve been living on a disability pension for the last few years and it’s enough for most of what I need and a bit to save for an eventual tiny house. If I had enough money to build a tiny house right now I could live on even less. It’s highly unlikely that things are going to change to the point where money or some equivalent concept is obsolete but it’s definitely past time that so many resources should be tied up or misused by so few people to the detriment of the entire planet and so many of it’s inhabitants and ecosystems.
I worked many years for other people and while I enjoyed my work as a teacher and helping youth I hated the politics and grind of the 9 to 5 BS and that was a major impetus to my decision to build a small off-grid cabin, downsize my possessions and refocus my life.
I went from a 6 bedroom, 4 car garage, with swimming pool to a 14×14 off-grid cabin and have never regretted my decision.
But I didn’t become a minimalist that eschews money, nice things and social interaction and instead I used my savings from living a simple life to start 3 businesses and put my savings to work in helping my kids in their education goals and building a sustainable homestead so that IF that money runs out I will still survive and thrive.
I now have the time to enjoy my hobbies and I can take a vacation whenever I want and work only when I want.
That is freedom that money can not buy if the lifestyle is focused only on making money and having stuff.
Money and nice things is not evil and living in a smaller home and sustainable living does not have to mean being a pauper or minimalist if that is your choice and I know many wealthy people living in shacks like mine!
Live simply so that others may simply live.