Tuesday, September 2, 2008

This Time of the Month

Our net-worth hopefully takes a small spike up at each month start


The start of each month holds both a sort of thrill and desperation. We manage each month trying to meet our goals, pay our debts and grow our net-worth as much as we can.

My budget excel chart eagerly waits its monthly update, its graphs shimmering with anticipation. I take great joy in our budgeting process. I can’t say if it is as a result of my constant dealing with budgets, finance and money or just an obsessive compulsive behavior. A bit of both I reckon.

The passage of time receives yet another meaning, waiting for wealth to accumulate, slower than the growth of trees. I don’t really believe true wealth can accumulate in one lifetime of solid salaries. It’s just too slow and the numbers are too small.

Still, comfortable living and early retirements are not just fantasies for the majority of hard working people. It is a pity many of our better years are spent in our workplace but there is challenge and growth to be had at work as well.

The secret is obviously to avoid constantly checking our balances and portfolios. A watched pot never boils and a watched portfolio never “compounds”. Short term thinking and planning have always plagued man kind but during the past couple of decades have worsened due to us getting used to instant gratifications.

The months do go by pretty fast eventually, the budget history grows bigger and more detailed and our net worth grows, however slowly. I sometimes have a difficult time reminding myself money is a means to an end and not an end in itself as we’re always taught the power of compounding works only in long periods of saving.

We do have a life to live and it is important to remember. I’m very far from frugal and I believe money should serve us. I do have goals and I try to meet them, sometimes avoiding or postponing what I don’t necessarily need at any given moment.

Hopefully the start of this month finds you all well. Please feel free to share.

Image by: hounddiggity

1 comment:

Abby said...

I know what you mean about short-term thinking. I get very anxious and have to constantly calm myself down, reminding myself that this is a long-term plan. No one step is going to solve all our debt immediately.

I think the key is to check in periodically, like you're doing, and watch numbers go up (for net worth) and/or down (for debt). Since we pay our bills weekly, it's just that much easier to get carried away with obsessing over finances.