Don't tell me where your priorities are.

Show me where you spend your money and I'll tell you what they are.

-James W. Frick

Plan YOUR work! Work YOUR Plan!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Addicted to Stuff?

I think I’m addicted to stuff. Meaning, everything that I always wanted when I was growing up but never could have I am trying to make up to myself now. I don’t know if this is normal, but it is something I struggle with almost daily. It could be movies, clothes, shoes, toys (electronics, video games…). I guess it is kinda normal when thinking about it, look at athletes, musicians, actors who came from nothing, coming into a lot of money. What is the first thing they do? Buy things they always wanted. Do they really need 10 cars and 7 houses? No, but these items have become like toys to them, toys they never got. Look at people who have illegal means of monetary success (ie. drugs or sex), what do they do? Buy things they wanted buy couldn’t buy before. As a society, we are trained to want things and when we aren’t able to get the things we want we either find some way (legal or illegal) to come into the money or we wait/do without. Everywhere you look we are bombarded with images of things to buy, things we might really need, things we want, things that are ridiculous and clearly don’t need. It has become an unconscious yearning. Have you ever bought something, then when finally getting home realize you didn’t want the item in the first place but you just had to have it? Exactly!

I work hard for my money, ok I work for my money, so I want to be able to do the things I want to do in life and have the things I want to have. The problem is I’m not at a point in life where I can treat myself to whatever I want…yet. I do well most of the time curving my craving for stuff, but sometimes the cravings win out. I have always had a passion for shoes, but was never able to buy the ones I really wanted. Well, in the last 3 months I have bought at least 6 pairs of shoes. What’s the problem? I don’t think I bought myself 6 pairs of shoes in the last 2 years previously. Growing up, I never had upwards of 6 pairs of shoes at once that’s for sure.

I feel slightly guilty buying myself things. I feel bad because my parents are still struggling, but is that my fault? Although I have always been somewhat responsible for them, am I responsible for them? I do what I can to help, but never feel like it’s enough. I have always been financially responsible, mostly because I saw my parent’s waste money and decided as an adult I wouldn’t waste money and have to struggle unnecessarily. I am proud of how hard I have worked to get what I have and of the fact that NOTHING has ever been given to me. Even as a child I had to earn everything I was given. I kept my grades up, that was my “job”. I mowed lawns, shoveled snow, babysat, and delivered newspapers all to get money to do what I wanted. Usually, I spent the money on things we needed or helped my mom pay bills. I have always been this way.

I guess this is just part of growing up and dealing with my past. We all go through it at some point, to some extent. It’s a learning process, learning that I work hard for what I have and that I deserve it all and more. One day, maybe I will be guilt free.

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