Feeling Poor When You Make Enough


I saw a blog post title on twitter the other day. It was about making six figures, but still feeling poor. Without reading the article to see what direction they were going, I thought, “Man, that’s Weston and me sometimes”. Why do we feel that way? We make good money separately. Great money together- for our ages.
Then I remember our budget. We are trying to save both in our ROTH IRA, Savings Account, and savings categories for different things – home maintenance, car replacement/car maintenance, furniture building and purchases, home remodeling. Plus, we’re tithing 10% and giving to a friend. So a lot of our income goes to this stuff. Our goal is actually just to live off of his income, since he would continue working and I would quit once we have kids. We’re close to that, but not quite there.
So, yea, a lot of times we still feel kind of poor. Don’t get me wrong, we still do a lot of fun stuff. We go to A&M football games, we go out to eat, we buy books and games, we go on dates. But when so much of your money is allocated to other things, it can often feel like you’re scraping pennies to try to keep up with the people around you.
Social Media doesn’t help this. We see photos and tweets of people’s new homes, their vacations, cars, new toys, and think, “How on earth are they paying for this?”. But what you don’t know is:
1. How much are they actually making? Maybe they are somehow making way more than you and have lowered a lot of their expenses.
2. How much are they saving? Are they saving anything for future goals? Retirement? Investments? Down payment on a house? For a vacation later on? An engagement ring?
3. How much debt do they have? Maybe they’re maxing out credit cards left and right. Making the minimum payments on everything and in reality are barely staying afloat.
4. Where are they skimping to be able to afford this stuff? Maybe they eat rice and beans the last week of every month to save money on groceries to be able to afford that thing they want. Maybe they freeze all winter and keep their heater really low. Maybe they carpool or take public transportation.
But what it boils down to is, are you okay “feeling poor” to reach your financial goals? We have to reevaluate often to determine if were our money is going is where we really want it.
Are we okay not getting to go on a family vacation with one of our extended families to put money in our IRAs?
Are we okay saying we can’t go out to eat with friends every time we are invited so that we can put more money toward furniture for our home?
Do you ever feel like this? Do you ever feel like you’re poor when in reality you’re doing fine?

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