What does wealth mean to you? In my twenties I thought is was having a huge house, expensive car, and millions of dollars in the bank.
Ah, so young. So naive.
Nowadays, my thinking has changed vastly. Maybe it’s because I’m a 33-year-old guy who got burned out by the wacky world of capitalism, but my time is much more valuable than money. Cash is something I need to keep the bill collectors from putting me on notice, but without time, I can’t spend time with my girlfriend, hang out with friends, or pursue my many interests. If it was at all possible, I would forego money altogether in favor of time.
Such is not the way of America.
Therefore, wealth has taken on a new definition for me. It’s not just about time, but it’s also about what I own. No, I don’t mean random stuff I bought or things I need to pay off. I’m talking more about things I own independently that either don’t cost me money in any way or earn me money in some way. What does this mean for me?
No car payments.
Less frivolous spending on STUFF (i.e. things that I want, but have little value outside of my personal desire)
More frivolous spending on experiences that utilize my time in meaningful ways.
Not everyone will agree with this. Certainly not my parents. But I do notice once I became less captivated by typical consumer culture, I quickly found I don’t need as much money to survive. As such, it’s inevitable that my definition of wealth would change because money isn’t as big of a priority. I need money for certain necessities, but if I find ways to take care of those necessities on my own (cooking, growing vegetables, investing in solar panels, etc.), I don’t need wealth that provides excess. I just need wealth that provides time.
And bacon. I still need my bacon.
Peace out, party people.
Previously: Credit can Kiss My Butt