I wrote this post back in June. It was when I first started my writing side-gig. I was working non-stop, had recently started investing, had just gotten out of consumer debt, and still had student loans to pay off. I had too many options at the time. After reading this over, I’m proud of myself. I’m staying true to my path and myself and not letting lifestyle inflation get the best of me. So while this post has been on the back burner for a while, I think it’s a good one and it’s time to put it on the line.
Is a popular topic in the pf blogging world. It’s something that touches all of us in some way. We get a new job or a raise and that extra money goes toward something we’ve been wanting. Maybe we upgrade to a better car, start drinking top shelf liquor, find a bigger apartment in a better neighborhood. Sound familiar?
I like to think other members of the working poor class read this blog on occasion. I hope that I inspire you to work towards getting out of this vicious cycle. So if you’re like me and that’s exactly what you’re trying to do, you need to pay special attention to this post. Lifestyle inflation can break you. However, lifestyle stagnation can benefit you for years to come.
You want to check out the links below. I promise. These ladies are much smarter than me.
Understanding lifestyle inflation – MD does a great job of breaking this down. Definitely give this article a look.
Want to retire early? The simple math — and magic — of lifestyle stagnation – Here’s another one from Our Next Life. Mrs. ONL explains the benefits of lifestyle stagnation and includes some fantastic charts to show just how much money you can bank by doing this.
It’s an ongoing battle.
In both the minimalist and the frugality camps. Sometimes, purchases end up being for things that we really need or have been neglecting to purchase for one reason or another.
I am no different. In my effort to remove myself from the working poor, I’ve found that neglect is something that has become common. I haven’t had health insurance in over a decade, for example. When things start to get rough with my health or my body, I take ibuprofen until it stops hurting. Or I’ll try a form of natural medication (not weed) if I can find something that will potentially relieve my symptoms.
The minimalist part of me says “Just get the bare minimum of health insurance” while the frugal side of me says “NSAIDs are cheaper than insurance.”
This is the WAPH shit samich
The insurance issue is just the newest topic that has been bouncing around in my head. Other things have included small purchases like new shoes to larger issues like investing. I never did buy the shoes. I did start investing.
*Note: Still haven’t bought shoes. They’re pretty much ruined at this point. I just keep rocking them.
So how does this form of lifestyle inflation compare to that of the middle class? Not a rhetorical question. I’m asking.
I’m not looking to buy anything new or nice at the moment but the thoughts that have run through my head lately have me wondering if I’m going to turn into that guy.
After I climb out of this hole, am I going to be a victim of lifestyle inflation?
I like to think “no”.
But I’m not out of this situation yet. I don’t think I ever will be. I’m starting to understand that no matter what situation I find myself in, there are going to be these kinds of questions. As someone who has become more “financially minded”, it seems I need to accept the fact I will always question purchases and lifestyle inflation.
I’ve learned my lesson when it comes to playing fortune teller. As a poker player, I know all it’s going to take is that one moment of weakness for me to lose big.
There are some things you can’t get a refund on…
There’s only so much thought I’m willing to put into this in the here and now. I’m still climbing out of debt, I’m new to investing, and while things are looking great, I still have a long way to go on this journey.
Even though it hasn’t had much of an effect on me yet, I wanted to mention how powerful lifestyle inflation can be as I’m sure I’ll continue to talk about it down the road.