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In today’s social media-driven society so many details of our personal lives are only a click away. Our primary form of communication or interactions with each other are through tweets, Instagram posts, and Facebook status updates. We are often just trying to “keep up” and find motivation from our number of followers and likes. Maybe without even noticing, we begin to put our lives on display as a status symbol. As a blogger, I understand this now more than ever.
Showing off our red bottoms, newest designer bag, or our lavish evening out, has become the norm. To outdo our “frenemies,” we have begun to consume conspicuously, caring more about our standard of living concerning our peers than our well-being. At what point we stop trying to keep up and just start living for ourselves?
“Keeping up” isn’t what it used to be. Today, we are all trying to be the envy of all our friends and people we don’t even know. We all find ourselves admiring those who may “seem” to have it all, but you have to understand there is a fine line between admiration and emulation. The pursuit of a lavish lifestyle and expensive material things can be to your financial detriment. When it starts to take a toll on your wellbeing and puts a strain on your finances, its time to Stop trying to keep up with the metaphoric Kardashians. Realize this is not a race and make the lifestyle and financial choices that are right for you.
Learn to Say “I Can’t”
A friend of mine recently went on a lavish trip to celebrate her best friend’s birthday, for the sake of the post, we’ll call her Sally. The birthday girl is financially well off and planned many expensive dinners and excursions during the trip. Sally found it hard to participate in the festivities, knowing she was going to return home in debt.
Instead of opting out of a few activities or declining the trip altogether, Sally went along and is still trying to financially recover from the adventure. It’s hard to say no when a loved one is involved, but you have to learn to say “I can’t” and be honest. Your friends and family will understand and shouldn’t hold it against you.
Curb your Shopping
These days we get so caught up with trying to buy the latest and greatest when most of the time we don’t even need, nor can afford it. I love designer shoes just like the next girl, but I refuse to let my indulgences get in the way of my financial freedom. Stop trying to “impress” and start thinking about how spending is affecting your life. By taking a look at the big picture and mapping out your path, you will put yourself in far better position for the future.
Are you happy? Do you feel fulfilled? If you answered no to these questions, then it is time to make a change. We all have bills to pay, but if the work you are doing is not bringing you a little joy, then its time to find an income stream that can also add to your wellbeing. Are your hobbies good for your mind and body, maybe they should be! We all have guilty pleasures, but there has to be a balance in life. Find ways to spend your time bringing joy to yourself. Remember the material things that may bring you happiness won’t last long term.
Make A Plan You Can Stick To
When you start living life for you and stop trying to please people and impress the masses, you will find new clarity and perspective in your life. Take a look at your old practices and start making new healthier choices in your life. That may mean climbing out of debt, which is not easy or changing your habits or hobbies. The most important element is to understand that this is a process, change will not happen instantly. Be diligent with your new set of goals, and you will see improvement over time.
Surround Yourself With True Friends
A final element for setting your pace for success is to surround yourself with like-minded people who help nurture your goals. Friends who encourage you to spend when you don’t have the money or shun you for not flossing the hottest items are only going to hold you back from your reaching full potential. Financial discussions can be difficult to have, but they are vital if you feel you’re living beyond your means. As a collective, you all can stop trying to keep up and pave your road to happiness.
Have you ever been “trying to keep up”, what got you back on track?