Sunday, December 22, 2013

Stop purchasing, live with less


In 2013, I racked up a credit card debt of over $4500. A huge chunk of it was due to orthodontic treatment while the remaining was just pure consumerism.

I am not proud of this.

The wake up call came when a paycheck was delayed and I struggled to make ends meet for that month. 4 years of chasing grades. A Bachelors degree. Meant nothing.

The monthly paycheck was more than what a fresh graduate could ask for, yet the numbers in the savings account was and is still embarrassing. The main problem was excessive spending. It still baffles me that the problem is so obvious but yet so hard rectify.

You see, it's an emotional urge. A typical white collar syndrome. We worked hard all week. Advertisements & friends tell us that it is fine to treat ourselves to something good. We feel we deserve more and we spend. 

It's a trap. Don't fall for it.

Weekends, malls and some balance in the bank is the perfect guide to being a paycheck prisoner.

2 months back, I started purchasing only necessities. I allocated a larger sum each month to pay off my debt and I'm glad that I will be free of debt in another month or so. 

The results are encouraging.  

I would be lying if I said it's easy to resist the temptation of buying a shiny new toy. The influence of social media and advertisements is stronger than ever. The more you try to resist, the tendency to succumb to your temptations is higher.

Instead, fill your time with activities and experiences that are more meaningful. Soon you will realise that physical items only bring about temporary satisfaction while experiences last forever.

I now spend the weekends at a coffee joint with a book and a laptop, writing posts like this.

I feel better now and I won't be looking back anytime soon. 
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