“Money has never made man happy, nor will it, there is nothing in its nature to produce happiness. The more of it one has the more one wants.” Benjamin Franklin
One of the hardest things my family and I are going through right now is the realization that money is a temporary circumstance. We’re debt free. We’ve got our safety net (six months of expenses) almost funded…and soon we’ll be heading out on a luxury vacation with our extended family.
Life is great…but to be perfectly honest – we are still striving for more money.
I think we both anticipated there was going to be a feeling of ease in this phase of our financial freedom journey. We thought we would take it easy. We thought that once our debts were paid we would be happy just to live within our means. But there are things we want to do…places we want to go…opportunities to welcome…and future’s to fund (three boys in college!)
You could say that we enjoy the feeling of security that we have now that we’re debt free. But in reality – we just want more.
Wanting more isn’t a bad thing, but like I said…we really just wanted to be happy. That’s the thing – money can’t buy happiness. That’s a daily struggle for many people to understand. Many women enjoy what we call “retail therapy” where they spend hundreds or thousands of dollars buying things they think will make them feel better. But those things rot, burn, and become out-dated.
My husband and I have decided that striving for more isn’t a bad thing for us because we don’t want more “things”. What we want is time – with our children, with our neighbors, with our friends. We want time to serve others. We want time to serve each other. We want our lives to be full of rich and meaningful experiences.
So – even though we are striving for more money – we are also striving for more intention in every moment of every day. You only live once (YOLO), right?
So please – although you may hear that money is the root of all evil and that you shouldn’t be greedy or strive after wealth (all these things are true – for some people), my family and I have experienced a wealth beyond monetary value…a rich and abundant life with little stress, lots of happiness, and precious memories. Having control of our money has allowed us those experiences. Having willpower to not splurge and instead plan, has given us the freedom to do what we want, when we want.
I hope that our journey to better financial fitness inspires you to take control of your money. Don’t strive for material wealth, instead, be intentional with your money and the time you are given. Money can’t buy happiness but having money sure does make day-to-day living a lot less stressful.