Some people are what we call frugal in every single way – with how they shop for clothes to wear, where they want to dine (if ever they do decide to eat out, and even with the activities they engage in. They are very careful with how they spend their money, and it is impossible to accuse them of living luxuriously because of their lifestyle and habits.
On the other hand, there are those who embody the cliche “eat, drink, and be merry…”. It is typical for them to eat out almost every single day and night, and they party hard after work, or even splurge on the latest gadget or outfit without feeling guilty about their expenses. But sadly, these are also the kind of people who end up taking out loans from a bank or from a money lender Singapore offers for those who are in a tight financial issue. They make money, but they spend it quickly until nothing is left for the rainy day (or at least even for the next day).
After all that money has been spent, there is no choice but for these people to live a frugal life. They have to tighten their belt a little and make do with what they have. Considering the amount of money they have loaned, they find no excuse for them to splurge even more. Otherwise, they may be up for some serious money issues in the long term. Don’t even get them started with the question “what if you get sick?” because with the lack of funds, they are unlikely to have an emergency fund as a cushion during tough times.
This is why we can classify people into two types when it comes to frugality. There are people whom we consider as frugal by choice, while others are frugal by circumstance. What’s the difference between the two? Read along and you will discover more.
Frugal By Circumstance
You probably know someone who never really used to be frugal at all, yet now, he or she is not very easy to tag along for parties or dining out at an expensive restaurant. Perhaps before, these people are usually out and partying, but now, there seems to be no trace of that lifestyle. What could have happened between then and now?
This is a classic example of what frugal by circumstance means. For people who may have been quite careless and irresponsible with their money, they end up suffering the consequences of their actions. Although before, spending on unnecessary things was a part of their daily life, they are now reaping the results of all the splurges they have made. So, they wake up one day with hefty debts and mortgages to be paid, which give them so much to stress about each day.
Their credit card debts are high, and it may seem somewhat impossible for them to pay these. Then, there are other expenses to worry about such as their rent, utilities, and food, which can be too much to deal with when there is barely sufficient money coming in after paying their debt. Thus, they are forced to be frugal in their everyday life – eating cheap food and avoiding every opportunity to shop and go on a trip.
Overall, it is sad to think that they have no more control over their finances because of their debts. They did have a chance to enjoy life, but now they are forced to avoid any possible reasons to spend a lot because they were too careless with their finances in the past.
Frugal By Choice
Next, we go to another kind of person whom we can consider as frugal by choice. Mainly, these people are the ones with a strong sense of ownership. They realize that every action they choose to do comes with a consequence, so they are cautious about the decisions they make. From the shopping list they prepare to their choice of restaurant to dine, as well as when it comes to major purchases in life, they want to make sure that these are all done accordingly without any massive impact on their finances.
Sure, they make a good amount of money every month, their source of income is reliable, yet they establish the fact that this is not at all a reason to splurge carelessly. They carry with them the understanding that life has surprises sometimes, which means they need to be prepared for these financially. Building their emergency fund is a priority, and they do the best they can to allot a percentage of their earnings to their bank savings every payday.
These people are most likely to undergo less stress in life linked with debts and skyrocketing expenses. They believe that the kind of future they will have all depends on how they live their present life, so they realize the value of saving for tomorrow instead of spending everything for today. Otherwise, they may only go through the toughest storms in life with their failing finances – and this is something they would never allow to happen, considering their frugal ways.
It is all about experiencing debt freedom. Just imagine how you would feel if you are completely debt-free. There is so much ease in everything you do – no need to worry about putting in a fraction of your salary for debt payments. Instead, you can simply grow your bank account, retirement funds, and enjoy life more. There is even the promise of retiring earlier in life, which frees you from the mundane and humdrum of the daily grind. After all, who wants to keep working until their old age, right? The only thing you might want to do when you are old and gray is to take relaxing trips, spend more quality time with loved ones, and basically do the things you enjoy the most. And all of these do not include being stuck in a 9 to 5 job.
Value Your Life and Freedom
Frugality is not about restricting yourself from enjoying and experiencing life. In fact, it is quite the opposite of this. There are some individuals who may view frugality as not giving yourself a chance to appreciate life because in an outsider’s view, there is the assumption that frugal people disallow themselves to travel, eat out, and shop because all they want to do is save, save, and save even more money.
On the contrary, these frugal people are highly responsible with their actions. They are doing these things all because of the fact that they look at the big picture all the time. Since they have no plans of going through stress with massive expenses or debts, and there is no way that they want to keep working as an employee for the rest of their old age, they do everything to avoid these paths. So, they have plenty of cushion to keep their life afloat when crises come, which means there is no need for them to borrow money from people or exhaust all their funds.
If you live not just for today, then you will understand the beauty of frugality. Life may be short and unpredictable, which only means it is best to be prepared for every single surprise that might come your way. With this understanding comes the habit of being practical and living within your means. Even with little income, you can maintain a decent quality of lifestyle as you continue to save for the future.
With a house to live in, food to eat more than three times a day, money in the bank, and your loved ones by your side, what more can you ask for? Moderation is key to achieving happiness and comfort in life. When you are responsible with the resources you have, you can be sure that there will be plenty left for you to use when the time comes – and then you have nothing to worry or stress out about. So, own your life and do not be a victim of it. Frugality by choice is without a doubt the best way to go.