Did you ever think Social media could play a role in debt? There are some very real dangers of debt lurking on social media. Someone recently said that the previous generation’s version of Keeping up with the Joneses was all about having material things. Nowadays it has moved on to something that seems even more disturbing. We gain our self worth on social media, concerned with who can post the most interesting photograph and get the most amount of likes and comments. What are we wearing, what does our house look like, what gadgets do we own… Our research has found that this sort of social media engagement is linked to greater anxiety, lower self-esteem and an increased likelihood of excessive spending.
Be careful that your need for likes doesn’t end in debt.
Trying to keep up with the Joneses is a losing battle. Every time you think you are close, someone else will set the bar even higher. As soon as you buy the latest gadget or device, the manufacturer just releases a newer, cooler one. Once you renovate your house to match current trends the trends go and change and your place becomes outdated again. It is just so much better to make financial decisions based on what you really want and can realistically afford and not on what you think you have to do to keep up with the Joneses.
Is Your Goal Freedom From Debt?
If your goal really is total debt freedom, then making a few short term sacrifices will be worth it. But you have to realize that when you enter debt review it makes you act differently to the people around you who are always spending money on stuff that is not that important.
Well, known money guy, Dave Ramsey says, “No one accidentally wins at anything. You have to pay a price to win, and you don’t win if you don’t pay a price.”This is true. If your goal is getting out of debt then you actually don’t want to keep up with the Joneses who are neck deep in debt. In fact, you want to live entirely different from them. You want to avoid the mistakes they are making and shift your focus off them and what they have onto yourself and what you really want. Once you figure out what is really important to you (like financial freedom or building wealth for your kids) then you will be happy to work hard towards that goal.
As a benefit, when you’re not so focused on keeping up with the Joneses, you’ll be surprised to find that you will stop caring what other people think about your bank balance and you may even identify a few people in your life who are keeping you in debt.
Shift Your Focus
If you are able to shift focus onto what you already have and where you are going, once you cut envy and jealousy from your life you will be much happier. Each time you make that monthly debt review payment it will bring you a feeling of joy as you take another step closer to your goal. Every time you avoid spending money on things you don’t need you will feel a surge of satisfaction that you are staying focused. And when you look over at the Joneses next door you will shake your head in pity for them not envy.