As one gets older, the chase for material goods is less important. For one, our earning power diminishes over time. Our health is not in the prime. We have a family to feed. Our emotional and mental well-being requires our attention much more than before.
As we make the best out of our limited cash reserves, it makes sense that we attempt to live simply. We can start early as a matter of habit and the adjustment will be less as we get older. There are benefits in living simply. You save money. You have less to worry about losing or damaging the material items. You need not worry about what to wear every morning, because the choices are not too many. You do not have to dust/clean decorative items on display.
When you are out shopping for essential items, such as office wear, it makes economic sense to spend well and buy one item that you really like and is presentable, instead of buying many cheaper ones that you may not want to wear later. So quality is more important than quantity.
Same items may be sold at prices that vary from different shops. Make a note in writing of the shop that offers lower prices and when the need to purchase this item arises, go to that shop. Over time the savings add up to a significant amount. It is also good habit to make a list of items to buy and plan your route to different places. This way you do not make many trips for different items and save on transport costs.
When you are out shopping and before you buy an item, just pause and ask yourself: do you really need the item? This step will sometime stop you from buying from impulse.
You may want to consider whether there is a good substitute for an item. The hawker centre tea can be as good as the one from a branded outlet and costs merely a fraction of the cost because you are also paying for the ambience.
Living simply also means having more time to spend on yourself and your loved ones. You can read books to enrich yourself. You can connect with your children to understand them better. This is something money cannot buy.
Written on 10/27/2006 1:12 PM
Copyright © 2006, the author known as LKT in Singapore.