Have you ever had the conversation with anyone about what you would do if you won the lottery? Do you even play the lottery and if so why? Is it so you can have the life you dreamed of with the big house and the fancy car? Is it so that you can go on lots of holidays or so that you never have to work again? Well, I don’t blame you and I certainly don’t judge you; Dan and I have had this conversation many a time. We’re not lazy people who want a free ride but we want a good life with fine things. Is that so bad? Well, yes, I guess it is because is money that important? Do we really need it for a good life? Does it really make you happy? I don’t think so!
Who needs money? Not me!
So, I’ve been having a few thoughts lately about my future and how I would like it to be. I picture a husband (Dan obviously, sorry Dan), a big(ish) house, a nice car, ideally three children and lots of holidays. I stop in my tracks though when I realise that for all these things to be possible, you need money and (usually) lots of it.
I wouldn’t say I am a materialistic person but I do like new things. Since blogging, my desire for new things has expanded. I watch a vlog with someone recommending a new make-up product and I want it, a vlog where someone is wearing something very pretty and I want it and a vlog where someone bought a new homeware product (usually a candle) and I want it. There’s a serious case of ‘keeping up with the latest trends’ here and I know I am not the only one who suffers from this. From working in a school and having friends with children, I know the pressures people are under to buy the latest things, the latest iPhone, the latest iPad or games console and the latest make of clothing; the world is ever-evolving and we are all trying to keep up. What I (and other people) sometimes don’t realise is that all this adds up and by the time you get to the end of the month, you are financially no better off. Now, I know what you’re going to say; “CONTROL YOURSELF WOMAN” and you’re right, I know you are and if I want to save, I need to control myself. I will, I am capable; I am NOT out of control…yet!
The thing is, what I want to save for, seems like such an unachievable target that I convince myself that it’s impossible, I convince myself that it’s never going to happen so I should just enjoy life (and the money I have now) whilst it’s still there. When I say this, I quite like it; after all, life is for living right? We should enjoy it while we can and, as Nic says “you can’t take money to heaven”. She’s right, you can’t, but what if this time in ten years, I am still here and I have other people that I am looking after; I want to be able to provide the best for them, right? And if that means spending a little less on myself right now then that’s the way it has to be, of course it is. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t intend on spoiling my children rotten to the point where they don’t appreciate anything, I just want to give them a good life; not being able to do this scares me. I have to stop myself there though; can’t I do this without a lot of money? Can’t I provide them with food, water and all the love in the world without being a millionaire? I know I can. I know I will love my kids more than anything in the world and I know this would be enough…why is it then that I still want to give them more?
I don’t think this is a big secret now, so I’ll just say it, I would love to get married one day (to Dan) but the prospect of how much a wedding can terrifies me (and I know it scares Dan too). A thousand here, a thousand there – another thousand I haven’t got! Does a wedding HAVE to be that expensive? I completely understand why people would want the best for their wedding, completely understand. It’s one of the biggest days of your life; the one day you truly feel like a princess (even though my parents have made me feel like one forever) and the one day that is centered on you and your partner. So, I can completely understand why you would want to spend a lot, to get the best and I mean, if you have the money, why the hell wouldn’t you? What I’m saying is, do I have to? Would anyone really know if my dress was from Debenhams? Would anyone really know if my shoes weren’t Louis Vuitton? Does it even matter if they do?
I am at an age now where lots of my friends are buying their own home and some of the homes they are looking at, are lovely. I, however, am nowhere near buying my own house but does this really matter? Now, I don’t want you to think that I am in any way a bitter friend who is just jealous of her friends buying houses because I am happier than you can imagine for them. What I’m getting at is; does it matter than I’m not where they are in my life? Does it matter that I’m still renting? I don’t think so. I love the house we have. Yes, if it was my own, there are things I would do to it and yes, I do wish it was a little bigger sometimes, with a bigger back garden but it suits us just fine – isn’t that all that matters? My friends may be moving quicker, but they’re still my friends, they aren’t going anywhere and I’m just as happy…!
I think we, (and I am very guilty of this) focus a lot on money, what money can get us and what we would do if we had a lot of money but, does money really matter? I am very fortunate (as I have mentioned several times) to be surrounded by lovely, lovely people who I did not buy. These people mean a lot more to me than any piece of clothing, any device I own and any item of make-up in my make-up bag, these people will be there when the money isn’t and these people can always return my love – isn’t that all that matters? I can surround myself with things and buy the expensive things in life to make myself feel better but, essentially, nothing really makes me feel as good as my friends and family do.
So, with this in mind, I’m going to work on this. From now on, I think I’ll focus a little less on money and a little more on the people around me. I think I’ll stop dreaming of what big things I can get and enjoy the things and people in life that I don’t need to pay for – the most important things. I am not stupid and I know that you do need money for some things to survive in this world but, we don’t need to go crazy to have fun. So, I am going to try and do something each week for fun, for free (or as cheap as possible). All ideas welcome as I’m pretty sure I will run out one day! Why don’t you try it too and let me know when you do? I’d love that!