Being contrarian and not spending

Hello Friends,

I’ve been listening to the radio this morning and have heard several references to how the economy in the UK is now allegedly booming.  The point was made that this recovery is based on consumers going more into debt and by rising house prices, again fuelled by households taking on more debt in the form of mortgages.  The policy of keeping interest rates low deters people from saving and encourages them to spend, so the thinking goes.

It seems to me that living simply means being contrarian, not following the herd and not buying in (if you’ll excuse the pun) to the prevailing culture.  So if you’re going to live simply you will want to ignore advertising and pronouncements in the media  as well as spending less and spending consciously.  It means that recognising that paying off debt and saving is a good thing.

It isn’t easy in the face of constant bombardment.  You will feel as if you are out of step with the whole of society, but like any other habit, it gets easier with time.  Here are a few suggestions I’ve tried which work for me:

  1. Listen to your instincts – if they are telling you what you are hearing is wrong, it almost certainly is.
  2. If watching commercial TV avoid advertising – record programmes, watch them later and whizz through the adverts.
  3. Cut down on reading / watching / listening to the news.  Be aware that others have an agenda  and vested interests which may not be in keeping with living a simple, debt free life.
  4. Know your triggers when it comes to spending.  Mine are when I am bored and unhappy.
  5. Pay off debt and save, even if interest rates are low.  Having a bit in savings gives you breathing space.

What works for you in learning to swim against the tide?

Until next time, Tawney x


Being contrarian and not spending — 2 Comments

  1. I agree with you – definitely about keeping debt under control and saving – because you never know what is around the corner. I do keep a close eye on the financial items in the papers and on radio and TV. It is as well to know your enemy and his/her strategies. Sometimes I think the bankers and politicians think we are dim, but I am watching them!!!!

  2. Everything that you said totally makes sense and I agree with it all. I have found over time in the years I started living a “simple” life that contentment comes from within not from anything purchased! Just being content with what I have been blessed with and making sure to appreciate and care for what I already own (or am in the process of owning) and making it last! Which means lots of hours cleaning and maintaining my home, my garden, my car, and lots less hours randomly shopping, watching tv (which I agree with you, tv leads to discontment, I keep it off but my kids watch) etc… I am happier than ever!