I fully admit I spend money on many unnecessary buys. I love a new blouse as much as the next girl. The issue, however, is not simply buying an expensive cup of caffeine, a costly vehicle, or an overpriced top, but the combination of all these things and more.
What was the last thing you bought? Think about it. Maybe you really did need it. I understand trips to the grocery store can become expensive; there are specific prescriptions that are necessary for the health and well-being of certain individuals. The car has to be filled up with gas. Your children have to have warm coats and boots to wear during the winter season. But what could you cut back on?
A couple of years ago I asked my dad how so many people could afford to buy new cars so frequently. He replied with a simple answer I will never forget: “Well, honey, they can’t.”
At first this comment startled me. Then how the heck are they buying them? He had one word for me. Debt.
Unfortunately, many individuals have grown to believe debt is completely permissible. Perhaps they hope it will magically disappear one day with lottery winnings or something of the sort. But debt can be detrimental—not because it is unethical or immoral but because it can become a hindrance to the lives of those who suffer from it.
Obviously there are certain circumstances in which being in debt may be necessary. I’m not saying you shouldn’t buy a house or have necessary surgery or go to college. Things such as these are crucial; however, because we all have crucial things in life that require money, we must be much more careful when spending money on things we don’t truly need.
I may have been extraordinarily brainwashed into my passion about the importance of financial budgeting. My father is quite budget-inclined. So much so that my twin sister and I do not have cars at college. I live in a sorority house with 87 girls. I am the only one of 87 who does not have a car. At first it was quite irritating and sometimes can be somewhat overwhelming when I am in desperate need of an escape from the madness. But I know his intentions are pure in that he is teaching my sister and me to buy only the things we need and can afford. And while not having a vehicle at hand can become a tad bit frustrating at times, I am confident that whenever I purchase my first vehicle—debt free—it will be liberating.