A sacrifice means giving up something valued for the sake of other considerations. Often a sacrifice means giving up something really pleasant. Think expensive restaurant dining, shopping, and vacations that cost an arm and a leg. Sometimes, the urge to spend and be like everyone else is so strong that we ignore the very real fact that our finances are shaky at best. You’ve heard the expression “Keeping up with the Joneses” . This is one of the worst things that you can do. You can not compare yourself to others. If you ever plan on becoming financially independent, you need to start making sacrifices.
My husband and l recently celebrated our tenth wedding anniversary. This got me thinking about what sacrifices we had to make in order to make sure we would be financially okay in later years. One of the biggest was foregoing a big wedding celebration that would have cost us a bundle. An average wedding in the U.S cost $26,645. A friend of ours had gotten married 4 years before we did. His wedding cost in excess of $37,000 and he was still paying it off several years later!. We didn’t want to be in the same situation with added debt. Our burning desire to travel the world and quit the rat race as soon as possible led us to the decision of a simple ceremony at a wedding chapel. Total cost? $110. Looking back, l wouldn’t have changed a thing.
We also skipped a honeymoon. Instead, we picked up more shifts at work, side hustled and ate all meals at home. Our friends called us cheap to our faces, but they also understood because they had been hearing of our desire for so long. It took us another seven years to reach our goal. Seven long years full of disappointment , loss, and rebuilding. It was all worth it, We have been able to enjoy uncountable honeymoons since then.
The morale of the story is that it’s important to think of the big picture in life. Don’t be distracted by instant gratification. With the political climate these days, it’s important to realize that you can’t count on anyone but yourself. No one knows which way the wind is blowing, it is more important than ever to buckle down and save, save save. Don’t try to keep up with anyone. If you can’t afford that vacation, don’t take it. If you can’t afford all those expensive Christmas gifts, don’t give them. Ignore the Black Friday ads that are there to separate you not just from your money, but to also increase your credit card debt.
Get your financial net worth picture. This will serve as a good starting point to identify your strengths and weaknesses.
Pay cash for purchases. Cash is king. If you need to charge your purchases, you probably couldn’t afford it.
Ignore the naysayers. People are always going to put your dreams down. Just put your blinders on, and keep on doing what’s best for you.
Prepare for tougher times. I think it’s safe to say that the next four years are going to be trying for all. Despite what is being promised, I am positive that manufacturing jobs are not coming back to America. The cheaper labor in other countries is too enticing to the companies. The shareholders constantly demand more profit and dividend payouts.
What have you sacrificed or are you willing to sacrifice to ensure a better tomorrow for you?