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Old 02-09-2011, 01:51 PM
 
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I think Frugality means for me... that it always existed in my life, always practiced and now noticing many people are becoming more economically * conscious * than they might have been 5 to 10 years ago.

So, what the newer people are practicing ( smart saving, savvy shopping, eliminating things ) I have done my whole life. It's not as much culture shock to me as it might be for someone else no longer making $ 100,000 a year but they still spend like they do make that kind of money....

I also think this recession has turned people into more thoughful spenders and less waste and that part of the recession is a better way toward the future
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Old 02-11-2011, 06:09 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
14,229 posts, read 30,026,719 times
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To me, being frugal means getting the best for less. Just for example, I am remodeling a house. I do most of the work myself. This means I can spend my money on higher end appointments rather than contractors. I want a wonderama kitchen, therefore, I got a job at a high end kitchen store and I'm taking advantage of sales plus my discount to get a LOT for my money.

I love buying luxury items for less than I can purchase low quality merchandise at WalMart.
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Old 02-12-2011, 09:10 AM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,554 posts, read 86,948,301 times
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Well, here's an idea. Get two credit cards. Designate card number-one as for "things I need" and card number two as "things I want". There isn't anything you can do about invoice number one, and I'lll leave it to you to figure out what to do about invoice number two.
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Old 02-12-2011, 09:44 AM
 
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I believe the increase in happiness for more stuff has a rapidly diminishing rate of return above a certain point. I'd be way happier living in a small apartment than a tent in the woods, but a bigger apartment wouldn't do nearly as much for me over a small one. I like being able to travel in a small older economy car much more than riding a bike or taking the bus (I'm in Phoenix) but a brand new bigger car wouldn't really improve that aspect of my life much at all.

Etc.
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Old 02-12-2011, 11:05 AM
 
Location: Planet Eaarth
8,954 posts, read 20,676,799 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chango View Post
It seem "frugality" is usually interpreted as "making do with less" which ends up meaning less luxuries and conforts too.

Now I've whined before here about being a poor man in a rich man's world, but something I can't quite articulate deep inside me says it should be totally possible to live what feels like an "extravagant" life without the extravagant price tag that normally comes with it.


Am I deluding myself? Does frugality mean lowering one's expectations of what "the good life" constitutes, or does it just mean doing it smarter?

Any advice or thoughts?

The single most important understanding of money is to learn what money "is" along with a crystal clear understanding of the "value of enough".

Once you have a firm grip on those two concepts you are well on your way to positive riches that can't be bought.
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Old 02-12-2011, 04:26 PM
 
Location: In America's Heartland
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You will only really be happy and satisfied with your life, when you realize that the "Good Life" does not revolve around the stuff you buy.
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Old 02-12-2011, 04:34 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
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My sense of the worth of money lies not in what it will buy, but in how hard it can be to get.
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Old 02-12-2011, 05:52 PM
 
30,896 posts, read 36,946,537 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slackjaw View Post
I believe the increase in happiness for more stuff has a rapidly diminishing rate of return above a certain point. I'd be way happier living in a small apartment than a tent in the woods, but a bigger apartment wouldn't do nearly as much for me over a small one. I like being able to travel in a small older economy car much more than riding a bike or taking the bus (I'm in Phoenix) but a brand new bigger car wouldn't really improve that aspect of my life much at all.

Etc.
Yes, very well said. Psychologists and economists who study the relationship between money and happiness are finding the same thing. Money and material things money do bring happiness....but only up to a point. And that threshold for where the happiness wears off is a lot lower than where a lot of people think it is.
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Old 02-12-2012, 01:35 PM
 
Location: MO->MI->CA->TX->MA
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It's a little difficult to do right now since I'm broke and have been broke since finishing school in '09.. but once I'm no longer broke (read: $1mil or more in net worth), I'll align my work ethic and spending with the business cycle.

1) When the economy is good: Work hard at the job and save as much money as possible.

2) When the economy is bad: Slack off at work, get fired, go take a vacation, live off of investments (10% returns on $1 mil is already 100K/yr!)

There's nothing more depressing than the uphill battle to stay afloat in your career when the economy is in the gutters. Since there's already an oversupply of work, you really ought to be enjoying a nice vacation rather than fighting to take one of the few jobs out there.. that is, if you already have a massive emergency fund set aside.
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Old 02-12-2012, 02:47 PM
 
1,858 posts, read 3,103,234 times
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This is a great question, because it begs the question, "why are you being frugal?" I struggle with the concept of frugality for the sake of frugality. People who live that way often deprive themselves their entire life so that they can leave their earthly possessions to someone who will then do all the things that they deprived themselves of their entire life. To me, that doesn't make a lot of sense.

I like the definition that some have expressed here that frugality is deciding what is really important in their life (which is an individual decision), and then minimizing their spending in other areas to accommodate it. I also like the definition of living below your means, including preparing for the future. I just can't grasp the concept of reusing a sheet of toilet paper for no good reason, other than to be able to say that I saved a nickle.
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