I really, really want to spend money
So I end up tricking my brain into not spending. I know it's the right thing but I hate it.
I really, really want to buy stuff. Not presents, not avocados out of season but things I don’t actually need like sequins, metallics, velvet, feathers and faux fur.
I am apparently going through a glam-rock period.
Thing is, I could afford to buy stuff (lifestyle creep is a thing) but I know if I buy something spontaneously, I’ll regret it later. That’s a cycle I don’t want to deal with so the question is, how do you (re: I) deal?
And yes, yes, I budget and track my spending but it is hard to resist temptation when it’s lurking around every corner decked in marketing sparkle and sliding into your DMs like an unwanted crypto-bro or forex creep.
I’m not the only one. I’ve had this conversation with a lot of people that usually starts with me whining about how I don’t need this thing but knowing you don’t need a thing isn’t quite enough. I’ve found that I need to take a long-term perspective on spending or at least understand what spending can mean.
Am I going to wear sparkle, sequin, velvet, etc. more than once? Nope. I work from home. I still wear non-lounge wear for work and jeans for weekends. My current aesthetic is, “Did I brush my teeth today?”
Another friend pointed out the environmental impact of spending, which is not good. Now I know that corporations have a bigger effect on the environment and they need to be held responsible but I don’t want to contribute to it.
That ‘feel-good’ hit
We all know that feel-good hit we get when we buy something new. The thing is, I get annoyed after I buy something spontaneously so I’d rather save my money than have the feel-good-then-annoyed cycle. (This might be why it took five years to get new floors.)
I really hate donations
Wait, don’t come for me just yet. I mean, I hate doing clothing donations knowing where most of it ends up. I repair, cut and redo my clothing, trade with friends and buy secondhand but I’m trying not to send bags of clothing to charity. That means buying less.
I really hate clutter
I live in a small space and I don’t like housework. I do it because I don’t like dust and clutter. Shopping creates clutter and more things for me to dust. Ugh. Less shopping allows me to save money and lets me be lazier about housework because less to dust. Look, it makes sense in my head.
More money towards retirement
This is still a money newsletter for single people. I’ve already written several articles for next year’s tax season which means I’m trying to ensure I have enough money to pay my quarterly taxes and put away as much as I can for retirement. That’s because I’ll be a solo retiree and I am aware of the fear of outliving your retirement savings. As you can imagine, it’s not a pleasant thought.
I finally signed up for (one of) my jobs’ pension plan. It won’t be a lot but as my financial advisor pointed out, it’ll be something and it’ll be adjusted for inflation. I’ve never had a pension before. It’s weird.
So it’ll be hard to not buy stuff this season but I did buy some sparkle: a bottle of champagne.
(Yes, it’s a terrible metaphor. I’m not sorry.)
This week’s readings:
I wrote this. How to do your taxes and beat procrastination (MoneySense)
I don’t think there will ever be a better tax story than this. Japanese Government Uses Anthropomorphic Pile of Poo to Teach Kids About Taxes (Spoon and Tamago)
This was such a great read and made my grunge-era heart happy. Courtney Love explains why you’ve got to do the math (ft.com)
Interesting. Several of my self-employed/freelance friends have accepted full-time work this year. Where did all the self-employed workers go? (Globe and Mail, paywall)
Are foreign owners of empty homes to blame for Canada’s unaffordable housing market? (Globe and Mail, paywall)
Seriously, Toronto (and Ontario), do better. Priced out: Young professionals making $60,000 — even $120,000 — say they can no longer afford Toronto and will likely have to leave (Toronto Star)