I am a Spender striving to become a born again Saver.
I have an old Uncle George, who for as long as I can remember while I was growing up, said to me '....make sure you save Girl.' When I became an adult he added ' Try and pay lump sums on your mortgage.'
At the time I was pretty nonchalant about it, but he was right of course. If I was wise enough to heed his advice back then, I would possibly be financially free today, but I am a bit of a spender. A spender working on becoming a saver.
Admittedly I have made a few wise purchases. Nonetheless more often than not, I do not buy what I need, but what I want. Fortunately I now have control over impulse buying, especially big purchases, but how often do we buy something that remains in the wardrobe with the tag on for months? Or a pair of shoes that were damn uncomfortable in the shop and we convinced ourselves they would stretch as they were leather? Those same cute shoes then pinched so much when worn, that you vowed NEVER to let them near your blistered feet again.
I just returned from New York and I was surprised how little I bought. However what I did buy was expensive. One of my purchases was my first pair of what I deem as expensive shoes (it's all relative, if you collect Laboutin's for a living this is pocket change). I bought a cute pair of Jimmy Choos.
I am a sucker for a bargain and historically I thought that the idea of paying $100s of dollars for a pair of shoes was bordering on insane. However these were on sale from $710 to $535. Therefore I convinced myself that was a bargain and that I was worth it, then proceeded to make the purchase. You know what, until I had written this just now I had completely forgot about them! Ridiculous!
I think they're cute, snake skin, made in Italy, and you can literally smell the quality, but are they really worth that price? Hell no! Can I justify it by convincing myself I am worth it? Hell no again! I can afford them so that is not the problem, but does that mean I should have bought them? Say it with me, hell no! Simply because I forgot about them before I even wore them once.
This is where the problem lies. I by no means think we should work hard and not enjoy the fruits of our labour, but it makes sense not to do so in a nonsensical way. In order for me to be an example to KC and to teach him how to manage his money, I need to manage mine better now. That $500 would have covered my monthly utilities, all of them! Am I beginning to sound like Uncle George?
I will continue to treat myself. However in appreciating the value of money One must strike an equilibrium. Therefore being so thrifty that we are mean and deprive ourselves of things we can afford doesn't work for me either. All the same, my aim in life is to strive to be a better me. In doing so I can clearly do better with managing my finances.
So unless you have half a years salary cash saved and more if possible, think twice before buying those Jimmy Choo shoes. Thanks to the person that triggered these thoughts! I am going to rock them tomorrow though anyway - will post a pic!