18 Nov 2012

What's it for?

There are several reasons I have started myself on a path to financial independence. But above all I would say that it is my own pursuit of happiness.  

I first became aware of the real meaning of happiness when I read Aristotle's ethics. I have to say at 15 I didn't really get it. Why would I want to not pursue the latest gadget like the (then) newly arrived mobile phones. Why would I waste my time exploring nature and learning; when there are pretty girls to be turned down by woo.

But now I still don't fully get it, hey I'm no philosopher! What I have got out of it and what it's taken me so long to realise is that happiness is really all there is in life. If you are doing something that is not making you happy or inversely not doing something that would make you happy, something has gone wrong.

It finally dawned on me about 7 years ago that this was the case. I was sitting at home with a hangover after yet another night on the town being turned down by girls wooing young ladies. I realised that it isn't worth it.

Not the wooing young ladies part. But wooing these particular ladies. They haven't realised yet that the bar scene is ultimately completely unfulfilling and just moves your hard earned cash from your pocket into the local pub/club's. Whilst leaving you dehydrated and with a slightly larger beer belly than when you started. 

Then I decided to think about the things that are really important to me. 


Not necessarily in that order. So I thought what can I tackle first. Being single I couldn't really start thinking about children so I started actively trying to spend more time with my friends and family. Before I always let myself be approached, now I try to arrange meet ups, especially if I haven't seen people in a while.

What really got me was the quote: "Never let the grass grow long on the path to your friends house" I don't know who said it but it's awesome. Love it. 

I also realised that none of these things were necessarily to do with money. Yes, I might need to be able to buy petrol to get around. But it's not like I buy my friends or I can buy a loving partner. 

So as money is not a big thing for me, I decided to try and utilise it as best I could. 

Long story short, it didn't work for years!!! Not because it was the wrong thing to do but because I wasn't being conscious of my spending. So I started tracking my spending. To some degree it worked. I cut back a little. It really wasn't until I started reading Mr Money Mustache that I realised how much I was wasting. Not just my money, but my time as well.

So I have renewed myself, I am stringent and conscious of my spending at all times. It makes me realise all the alternatives available to me and how much better they are. Just a little thought before purchasing can create a lot of spare cash. 

Which can then be saved, compounded and used to become financially independent. This will then allow me to spend more of my time on the things I love. In the mean time I'm going to do all I can to use my time productively to increase my happiness whilst minimising my unnecessary spending to the reduce the time it will take to reach the FI milestone.

This life is now the norm for me and I have to say that I feel a lot more content than with the one I had before.

Stay well.


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