So, I’ve been thinking. I recently realized that for me, personal finance and minimalism are closely related. Maybe even one and the same.
Before you curse my interpretation, let me explain.
Personal finance allows me to simplify my life and create more space for the the things I value and care about. It helps me spend consciously, eliminate debt, save like crazy and reduce waste. Eventually it will lead me to my ultimate goal – financial independence.
I want to clear something up. Working towards financial independence doesn’t mean that I want to be filthy rich so I can fly around in my private jet while being fanned and fed grapes by my servants. Although that doesn’t sound like a horrible existence.
In all seriousness though, achieving financial independence means I’ll be independent from needing an external source of income to comfortably survive. Indefinitely.
This is not so I can loaf around on the couch and watch television. It’s also not because I want to join the Peace Corps.
It’s because I want to just be free.
- I want to be free to whisk my children away on adventures.
- I want to be free to meet a friend for coffee.
- I want to be free to explore the world.
- I want to be free to spend more time with the people in my life that matter.
- I want to be free to offer some of my energy to causes I care about.
You might be asking, “Why can’t you do that now?” I can. I do. When I can.
In general, people only have a limited amount of energy and resources, and I’m no exception. Right now my kids get first dibs on that energy reserve. My full-time job comes next, and lastly this blog.
Just because I work full-time doesn’t mean I want an overcrowded, complicated life.
So, while working full-time for someone else is not traditionally included in the definition of a minimalistic lifestyle, the definition seems to be evolving. I believe this is happening to meet the needs an emerging group of minimalists with more diverse ideas about what minimalism means for them.
For me, a minimalistic lifestyle means becoming debt-free and achieving financial independence. All while reducing the amount of stuff in my life and practicing conscious spending for any new stuff that makes its way into my life.
In short, personal finance = minimalism. At least in my world.
What are your thoughts?