The Ten Commandments of Finance: Commandment VIII Forget the Jones’

June 16, 2011 § Leave a comment

8.)  Ignore the Jones

 Peer pressure is not simply a problem for kids.  Grown-ups also succumb to it. Be it in the brands they think they must own, or vacations or even how they invest their money.

 If you hang around people who have different values about money or who make considerably more money than you, you may feel upset about your life and chosen priorities; that shiny truck in your neighbor’s yard, the vacations . You really can’t know how much debt they have or the financial situation in their life simply based on external appearances.

 Do you remember the commercial  – Lending Tree-loan services company

Stanley Johnson, who brags about his big house, his new car and how “I even belong to the local golf club. How do I do it?” he continues with a big, dumb smile, “I’m in debt up to my eyeballs.” Lowering his voice, but still smiling, he adds, “I can barely pay my finance charges.” The smile doesn’t leave his face as he drives a riding lawn mower, saying, “Somebody help me.”…

Recognize the potentially bad influence others may have on your spending and your attitudes pertaining to your life and your satisfaction.

 But also consider this: You might be a stinky influence on others. You may spend a lot when others are trying to be more frugal. You may brag about how easy finances are for your family and what a great job you have when others are struggling. Do a little self-evaluation and recognize the potential trouble or unintended pain you may cause to those you love, chickadee.

 And recognize that the influence you have includes the messages you are sending to your kids. Study after study show that if you make shopping your hobby you will teach kids to spend more. How do you spend your time with those babies of yours…? Do you encourage the hobby of shopping in them?

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