Welcome to FINANCIAL FRIDAYS, the VIBRANCYLIVES series about financial health and how it can help create a beautiful life.
I came to a realization recently about why I want to be independently wealthy. It’s not because I want more stuff. It’s because I want to spend my money differently so I can spend my time more wisely.
I’ve spent a lot of time in my life bemoaning my poor money management skills. I’ve gotten myself into and out of major credit card debt more than once — you’d think I’d have learned the lesson the first time. As I think about my childhood and my family of origin, I realize that I was only ever taught to be poor. There was no abundant thinking, many things were labeled “too expensive”, and the only ice cream I ever ate was coffee because that’s the flavor my mother liked, she did the shopping, and we couldn’t afford to buy more than one container.
Don’t get me wrong. I love my parents and recognize that they did the very best they could with the skills they were taught — even if those skills were dysfunctional. They didn’t set out to teach me poverty or ensnare me in debt. They just didn’t know how to do any different.
Everything I’ve learned I’ve learned by messing up. It’s my learning style. Lucky me. But I want off of the Merry Go Round of lack. I have no idea how successful I’ll be at building wealth, but I am open to learning.
And the first thing I’ve learned is why I want it. It’s really not so I can buy the latest widget (although a nice shopping spree now and then would be nice). It’s so I can create a beautiful life.
And a beautiful life means I have time to write instead of cleaning my house. To workout instead of grocery shop. To pray instead of do the laundry. Build my business instead of organize my closet.
And money allows me to pay someone else to do these things while I concentrate on the things that bring me joy.
I think in many ways, this is why everyone wants to be independently wealthy, even if they don’t know it. They may think they covet the Mercedes, but in reality, what they truly desire is the freedom that comes when you are not chained to a boss, a job, or a schedule. When you can work at the thing that gives you joy instead of the thing that pays the electric bill, and when you can give to whom you wish at any time — there is no mistaking that there is a certain joy inherent in this. It’s not the be all and end all (that would be a guy named Jesus) but there’s no denying its important.
So this series — Financial Fridays — will deal with issues around this. And that’s about as much as I have planned!