One of the keys to living a frugal life is to avoid feeling deprived. Many people seem to think that living frugally is all about "doing without," but to me, the whole point of frugality is to avoid wasting money on the things you don't really care about, so you can have more to spend on—or save up for—the things you do. A frugal life, lived right, should make you feel rich, not poor.
Now I've learned just how important this attitude really is. Apparently, there's a wealth of research out there to show that feeling poor makes you less satisfied with your life, damages your mental and physical health, and leads to risky financial decisions that can make you actually poor if you weren't before.
My latest Money Crashers article is all about the risks of feeling poor and how to counteract them. I discuss what can make you feel poor—regardless of your actual income—and the ways feeling poor can hurt you financially, emotionally, and physically. Then I discuss ways to break out of this trap by:
- changing your perspective to focus on how well-off you are already;
- taking steps to strengthen your finances so you'll know you'll have more in the future; and
- making yourself feel rich by indulging yourself with cheap luxuries and giving money to charity.
Learn more about these techniques here: How Feeling Poor Hurts You – and How to Stop It