Jealousy is a bad trait to have, particularly around finance. Anytime I get jealous of someone it usually results in me making a stupid decision. I guess it’s the pride in each of us, as we all want to accomplish things on our own, which I can appreciate.
But in a world where credit can provide the illusion of wealth, it’s important to avoid being jealous of someone’s financial achievement or success until you’re able to see their net worth statement, assuming they even have one prepared.
What most people perceive as wealth is largely made up of credit cards, loans, or unsecured/ secured line of credits. We all know of a person who seems to have it all, but from my experience, once you investigate things further things are often not what they seem.
The wealth illusion is so easy to put on today. Credit is readily available. Want to go away? You could save up, but why do that when you can just charge it to your credit card now. Want the wedding of your dream but can’t afford it? No problem, just charge it to your line of credit.
We’ve moved away from saving for things to simply financing our lifestyle. The question we now ask ourselves is; can I finance/afford the monthly payments? And by doing that, we trick ourselves into believing being able to finance something is the thing as being able to afford it.
Don’t chase other people’s lifestyle because the majority of the time it’s not as pretty as it looks. Jay-Z said it best, believe only half what you see and only half what you read (except for this blog of course).
But there are outliers; people who are living the life you want and doing it right. If you have these individuals or are even friends with them, my advice is to spend as much time as you can with them.
These individuals are private and have a small circle of trusted individuals. Sure, they have friends and some even have lots but they often have a small inner circle. These individuals are full of insight and often have a proven template for you to follow to become successful.
When hanging around these individuals you feel ambitious, not jealousy. You feel valued and not inadequate. They make you realize financial success is a series of many good small decisions rather than one great home run decision.
Learn to be content with what you have and ultimately remember success is what you make of it.