Right Sizing Your Life: Financial And Psychological Freedom
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Right Sizing Your Life: Financial And Psychological Freedom

Americans have trained to believe that newer, bigger, and more is better. Instead of living modestly, most people strive to own a large house with an expansive lawn, several cars, and pricey toys such as boats, campers, motorcycles, etc. and indulge in expensive hobbies like golf, skiing, collecting antiques, and exotic travel. If this vision sounds familiar, you probably live in a consumer society where marketing is king. If you live in a less materialistic society it is likely that you are still influenced to live” large.”

Embracing this philosophy is costly in terms of stress and the loss of free time. Without taking stock, many people spend the majority of their time working to support unnecessary financial obligations. Most people are busy working to pay for consumer debt and big ticket luxury items that they have little time to enjoy. How many people do you know that have boats, recreational vehicles, campers, etc. parked next to homes with large yards that require long hours of yard and landscape maintenance?

Henry David Thoreau explained this modern dilemma clearly when he said “The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it.”

Each of us is allocated only so much time on this earth. During an average lifetime, the human heart will beat more than 2.5 billion times. What do you exchange for your time which can be measured at 100 thousand heartbeats per day?

If we were consciously aware of this reality, most people would re-order their priorities so they could spend less time working compulsively to keep up with consumer debt, have more disposable time to spend with loved ones and to creatively “follow their bliss.” There are substantial advantages in “right sizing” your life.

Right Sizing Your Life

  • Increased time to live creatively
  • Improved physical and psychological health
  • Reduction of consumer debt by 40%
  • Elimination of 90% your financial worries
  • Improved quality of life

Here are a few suggestions to help you break free of unnecessary financial obligations, freeing up time, and enjoying our life.

Breaking Free

  • Live simply in a smaller, more efficient home. (i.e. 500-800 sq.ft. with multiple use space for guests, etc.)
  • Live nearer the city center where rents tend to be lower and transportation cheaper than the commuter’s lifestyle in the suburbs.
  • Use public transportation, walk, bike, whenever possible
  • Own a single vehicle as necessary (a used hybrid or a scooter)
  • Live on a budget based on income and needs.
  • Utilize free entertainment (i.e. library, parks, community sponsored concerts/theatre).
  • Pay in cash or use reward credit cards paid off monthly.
  • Shop farmer’s markets, flea markets, garage sales, and discounts stores.
  • Raise healthy food or buy from a cooperative.

Summary

The expression “less is more” is the key to financial and psychological freedom. It is not what you earn it is what you live on that counts. Remember, you don’t so much own your possessions as they own you. Ultimately, as Henry David Thoreau said “The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it”

Read more informative articles at James W. Siddall on Facebook

Image courtesy of Pixabay under the creative commons license 2.0


Street Talk

Thanks for sharing your ideas for setting your life into play in a way that enables you to really live it!

Reply
  about 3 years ago

Thank you Cynthia for your feedback!

Reply
  about 3 years ago

It is by nature, everyone wants big achievement in his/her life but some of your words (Improved quality of life) really touch my heart and i want to read more from you on this topic (Improved quality of life) ......... can you please James.

Reply
  about 3 years ago

Thank you for your comments. For me, real wealth is flexibility. Quality of life is the ability to spend my life creativily and not simply chasing financial wealth. Yes, we all need to earn a living but be careful what you exchange your life for......there is no substitute or replacement for your time.

Reply
  about 3 years ago

Yes james i totally agree.

  
  about 3 years ago

Greeting James, it is human nature to want the bigger and the best and strive for achievements. However, I have never thought about the amount of time the majority tend to waste on the consumption and use of time. Great article and thank you for the new insights. Cheers!

Reply
  about 3 years ago

Andrew, thank you for your positive feedback. Life is all about following a balanced plan with time as the most important commodity.

Reply
  about 3 years ago

Great read, James. It's interesting. When you start out, you WANT to work and make money in order to buy the things you've been conditioned to desire. Then, due to the trap of long term loans, etc., it is turned on its ear and you HAVE to work just to stay afloat. The longer you travel this road, the harder it is to resize. I believe its caused by a misinterpretation on The American Dream, mostly fed to us by large corporations.

Reply
  about 3 years ago

Thanks for your comments Justin. This is clearly a lesson you want to learn early. There are few worthy substitues for your time. If you can make your work your "bliss" you will very satisfied with your life.

Reply
  about 3 years ago

Great article James. I have frequently seen the comment that we all have the same 24 hours in a day available to us, but I never saw the quote from Thoreau that “The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it”... that is a totally different and sobering thought. It make me wonder just how much of my life I have wasted in frivolous pursuits...

Reply
  about 3 years ago

Thanks for your feedback Juan. We all have those regrets but we should remember this quote. "Every morning we are born again. What we do today is what matters." Buddha

Reply
  about 3 years ago
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