"I just want to be financially independent while I’m still young enough to enjoy it."
"Are you close?"
"Well, I’ve still got two daughters that need to go to college. So no."
I suppose it depends on what people mean by “financially independent,” but in general I think that if people are chasing that goal, they are chasing a pipe dream that distracts them from their actual life - the one that is passing them by. I mean, if you are truly poor, please disregard that statement, but for instance this guy in the picture, he looks like he’s a white man (clearly in an American city) who’s dressed expensively and he’s referencing paying for a couple of college educations, so. I’m guessing he’s already achieved quite a bit more than the average truly poor person considers financial independence to be.
It’s just so ridiculous, the way that so many people around the world just wish there was any available job, or that they could eat, and then when you have a crappy job and not-the-ideal food, you just want better. You get better, and you want better than that. This never ends. When people have vast amounts, they start concerning themselves with insuring all of it and investing it and how much they’ll have to set up and then leave to each heir. The maintenance of expensive things (owned homes, vehicles, STAFF, whatever) is much more than the maintenance of cheap things (rental apartments, buss passes), just like you start to “need” designer clothes and salon services at certain professional levels.
Everybody says, “Oh I don’t need to be a millionaire, I just want to be comfortable,” or some variation on that theme, but I know LOTS of “comfortable” and even “damn wealthy” people, and…they fight about money, with their spouses. They stress about money OFTEN, especially when it relates to what they can and can’t provide for their children. They move money around to make things they can’t afford happen.
I am not exempt. When I was pretty poor, I thought *I* would know how to be happy with x, y or z. That’s not really how it works, though. But I try to slow down and be thankful as often as possible, and aware that I might well have way less, down the road (because “more” is not promised to any of us). I try to remember that I have been REALLY REALLY happy as a broke teenager in a shitty apartment complex, and as a young mom/telemarketer, and as a person living in a room of someone else’s house.
You have to make it intentional, and find ways to be present and grateful, because the natural inclination is to always want just a little bit more than you have - for you, for your children, for your charitable giving (even if that’s change for the homeless), for your savings (or just to start saving), for every damned thing. And then you spend your entire life unsatisfied and striving, rather than just chilling the fuck out and ENJOYING anything. The bills are not going away. Generally speaking, shit works out ok and collection calls or your latest Excel spreadsheet are not what you ever remember looking back on, about a given year.