On my way back to Seattle after an amazing weekend in san diego. I have one last guest post for ya this morning.
Tim is the author of Faith and Finance, a personal finance blog that isn’t afraid to talk about reasons why you shouldn’t tithe and other cool things like that. In his spare time, he likes playing the sax, a good game of Catan, and eating Andy’s frozen custard.
You’ve probably heard this quote before, ‘The more you make, the more you spend.”
I hate it. Why? Because as much as I don’t want to admit, I’ve seen this quote’s ugly face peer its way into our finances, and I just want to punch it – right in the face.
About a year after my wife and I were married, I had an itch to buy a different car. Did I NEED a newer car….no. Did I just get a raise and justify the ‘great deal’ as something we ‘deserved.’ Yes, yes I did.
Since then, we’ve done a better job in putting to use any raises and have even set ourselves up to lose an income while my wife goes to med school this fall. The next four years should be interesting, but I’m expecting the years after med school to be even more difficult with respect to this nasty quote.
I’m not digging for sympathy here…we’ll be just fine with a doctor’s salary. The problem is that we’ll be hacking away at 200k worth of school debt for a few years and I DO NOT want to fall into the trap of spending more because we’re making more. I know a few doctors and lawyers who are making great money, but have a boatload of debt because they’re living it up with their super salaries and ignoring their debt.
The cruel part about this quote is that it doesn’t care how much you make. You can pull six figures and be broke, while someone making $50k laughs because they’re in a much better financial position.
So what’s the solution?
I think contentment is a huge piece of the equation. If you can’t be content with the small things, how can you expect to be content with the big ticket items?
Automated savings is another way to break free of the ‘make more, spend more’ curse. If there were one quote that could punch the ‘make more, spend more’ quote in the face it’d be this: ‘If you don’t see it, you won’t miss it.’ This is how we were able to replace one of my wife’s checks. We started setting aside a little extra from my paychecks each month and now we’re automatically saving an amount equivalent to one of her checks.
Have you ever been sucker punched by this quote ‘The More You Make, The More You Spend.” If so, how did you come out from under it?