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Imagine enjoying the day with family and friends or perhaps taking your dog for a play day at the dog park to celebrate life’s small victories. Inevitably so, you take out your phone to see what your friends have been up to lately. Scrolling through your news feed you notice”Mr. Jones” has just posted a picture of his shiny new ride along with the hashtag #winning. You keep scrolling only to see “Mrs. Jones” has also posted a picture of her newly designed kitchen with the best countertops and appliances money can buy with the notable hashtag #loved. Instantly, you begin to feel like you are not winning because you don’t have a new car and you feel a little less loved because your spouse hasn’t gifted you with anything nearly as expensive as Mrs. Jones kitchen.
Why do we allow what others are posting on social media to steal our happiness and influence us to spend money that we really don’t have for extra expenditures? Why do we feel the need to always compare our lives to our friends, family members, coworkers, etc? Every time we begin to play the comparison game- we forget how grateful we should be for the blessings we have and do not have. So what you don’t have a brand new car-maybe your seats are a little worn, paint is a bit tarnished but guess what? You also do not have the stress of wondering how you are going to pay that car note every month for the next few years. The average car note in America is $503 a month for a 5 years or more. Consider this, if you invested that $503 monthly for the next 5 years earning 9% interest annually you would have $38, 222.88! If you took it a step further and invested it for 10 years you would have accumulated $98, 067.71. Could you use an extra $98K?
Do yourself a favor and choose the decision that will change your family’s legacy. What you probably didn’t know was that “Mr. Jones” took out a car loan with a 18% interest rate for the next 72 months for his car and a second mortgage to remodel the kitchen on top of the student loan debt, credit card debt, and car note they already have for “Mrs. Jones” car. The view is very different when you are on the outside looking into someone’s life.
In short, resolve to live your best life without feeling the need to always compare yourself to others. Next time you begin scrolling through your news feed- refuse to let your friend’s post put you in a bad financial situation or have a negative impact on your mood. Resist the urge to make impulse buys of unnecessary items because you feel the need to keep up. Be in love with yourself and the process of getting ahead in your financial life. The next time you see “The Joneses”-its possible that they are BROKE!
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