Money fuels a lot of our life. We need it to pay our bills, eat, and have fun. Money as your master, however, is a mindset that doesn’t have to exist. Treat money as a tool you use to become happier with your financial life.
As personal finance blog The Frugal Farmer explains, trying to save money is fine. When it turns you miserable though, that’s a perspective problem. Your budget and frugality are maths problems (“Can I afford this? How much should I save to retire on?”). Feeling rigid, joyless or miserable is a psychological problem. Try to separate the two, rather than letting one influence the other:
Holy crap, I kid you not: the look on my face told everyone that I had a stick up my butt!!
And that’s when I realised that I had allowed money to have so much power over me that I had forgotten how to have fun and enjoy life. I’ve been allowing money, for a good 8 months, to allow me to feel guilty, to feel scared, to beat myself up for past money mistakes, and to guide most every decision I make…
My friends, forgive my crudity, but money isn’t sh*t. It means nothing. It is nothing, except for a tool we are given so that we can love, serve and bless others. So put it in its proper place and focus on enjoying the truly important things in life. You’ll be much happier, I assure you.
Of course, that’s not to say money can’t cause stress. It can absolutely do that. But solving your money problems shouldn’t be just as stressful as having them. If you have trouble being happy when you’re handling your money productively, try either appreciating your long-term goals (like financial independence), or, in the words of the Farmer, removing the stick from your butt.