Financial gluttony, over-spending, living beyond our means, and maxing out our credit cards/personal loans/business loans, sound familiar?
The answer is financial fasting.Over-spending happens to some of us personally, to some of us in business, to some of us in politics, and even on a global level. The remedy does not always lie in cutting out a person’s salary, cutting employee benefits, eliminating customer service, or outsourcing labor. We need to keep human integrity.
“People are worth more than things.” If you ever have so much to do that you do not know what to do first, the priority is, “people before things,” that is the Gospel According To Lin.
We cut corners where we can. We substitute lesser brand products for name brand products, spread things out a little bit to make it go farther. Most of us have been here at one time or another. You already know all this.
Still, many of us keep on the merry-go-round of spending, because there are valid needs, bills need to be paid, and food and shelter are high priorities. The difficulty comes when the lines blurr between needs and wants. We’ve been “good” so long that we want to “reward” ourselves with a night out to eat, or to a movie or anything else that is our placebo for the tight noose of financial restrictions.
We can have addictions to over spending, which is difficult, because, like addictions to food, we still need to eat. We still need to handle money responsibily.
A healthy answer would be to include “financial fasting.” Moretoriums, financial caps on our own spending, personally, within the family, companies, and government spending across the globe. What would happen if we did not spend what we did not have? What would our lives look like if we paid cash for everything and stopped the credit cards and loans? We are killing ourselves, literally, as our bodies and minds wear out from the friction of daily stresses, trying to make ends meet, or at least come close to meeting.
These questions can be an eye opener for us, if we find ourselves squirmming. Are we addicted to our lifestyle? Do we feel like we have choices? Many of us have lost so much in these times, from homes to businesses.
Some of us have not lost anything at all, as a matter of fact, some of us have made great strides, financially with ethical practices; while others of us have made huge profits on the backs of overworked employees, or are part of the millionaires club with no dose of reality for the ramification of political decisions, business decisions, as if our lives don’t really touch those of others because we are so insulated.
Whether it is ourselves who are overspending, or our bosses who are taking unfair advantage of us by dangling our jobs from their fists, or any other group who is using financial manipulation as a means to their ends, we can be like ostriches sticking their heads in the sand. Is it true, if we do not see something, then it is not happening?
While it is true what we focus on grows, it is also true that what we do not focus on does not get addressed.
We need to shed light on our realities. With a clear mind, no matter how extreme things may have gotten, the key is our plan. If that plan fails, make a new plan. We need to simplify, donate what we do not need or use, downsize our homes, minimize our bills, and practice financial fasting. However, like all fasts, they cannot go on forever, so make a long range plan, and keep adjusting along the way.