Debt Elimination and Lifestyle Change: A community blog

Linda Chavey writes about how to change your lifestyle habits in order to eliminate debt.

Consumption Spending and the Value of Money

Written by Linda Chavey, Community blogger | Aug 18, 2015 7:42 PM

Analyze our spending. Not a popular topic in today's world. But a rather necessary one. 

As I sit in the parking lot at the local outlet mall, I watch as many people rush through the parking lot, park their cars and dash towards the local Starbucks. I study their faces; anxiety, stress, impatience and what seems to me as an addiction. So what is this all worth? 

Our lifestyles are so busy today; busier than they ever were before. It seems to me as though we have traded our peaceful, fulfilling, satisfying lives for a life of busyness. Run, run, run, from here to there. Is this all worth the price we are paying? 

I see this all as a trend which will start as our economy takes a more-than-expected nose-dive. What are we most interested in? Going to work, getting our paycheck and immediately spending it on things we do not need? Would it be better to just make that coffee at home, satisfying the want for the coffee and the cost savings? It is amazing how much you can save just by cutting out take-out coffee. In a year, you can save an average of $1,300, just by eliminating Monday to Friday runs to the local high-end coffee shop. Tack on the gas, oil, wear and tear and other related expenses for your vehicle and the savings goes up. 

My one friend dries all of her clothing on a outside clothing line. She saves approximately $300/year on electric. She has a family of 6. She also is not decreasing her dryer's life because she is not using it often in the summer. She also saves wear and tear on her clothing. Every time a piece of clothing is dried in a dryer, it deteriorates it and deplletes its life span. 

There are many hidden costs to consumption. If concentrated on, it can be a real eye-opener.

One final thought - talking to a work friend, I was asking them how much they really wanted an item. I told them to take what they make an hour, minus taxes and the like and come up with a take-home figure (per hour). Figure out how much you make per minute. The next time you are interested in an item that is a "want", figure out how many minutes you would be workng for that item. Does it still look attracitve? That money that may be used to buy that item will be gone forever once it is spent. When money is spent, it cannot be replaced with a new money; it is gone forever. If you had the original dollar and add another dollar to it, you would have two. So many people thnk they will just "replace" the money. In essence, that is not the way it works. 

Value every dollar you get your hands on. It will be worth your time in the long run. 

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