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Living, Whether in Debt or Debt-Free (Guest Post)

This is a guest post from Remodeling This Life. She blogs about her life living in and remodeling an old house, and frequently touches on issues of personal finance. If you enjoyed her post today, check out her blog. And consider subscribing to her feed too!

I know a lot of people talk about the day when they are debt free and financially secure that they can finally fulfill their real dreams and follow their true passions in life. I agree with this, to an extent.

I wholeheartedly believe that one of the most sound financial decisions a person can make is to become debt free and then put as much money toward saving for the future and security as they can.

But I also believe that we are only young once, we only get one life, and we can’t let our entire life be consumed by finances. I believe every person, no matter what their financial status, needs to make room in their budget today for following what they are passionate about.

You may say you can’t afford to. I say you can’t afford not to. Not only does it make it harder to keep at the goal of debt reduction and ultimately elimination of the goal of enough money in the bank to retire at 50 to a tropical island. What if that day doesn’t come?

Life is still happening. You are still a person with a passions and dreams that need to be attended to. Whether it is setting aside a small amount each week in the budget so you can scrapbook or spending one month of overpayments to your debt to fly to Boston to run the marathon, it’s okay to let yourself do something that means a lot to you.

As much as we don’t like to admit it, we just don’t know what tomorrow brings. You can still plan and have outlined how you’d like things to go for your financial future but the reality is none of us know what tomorrow holds.

You have to also live for today. If you dream of something that really gets you excited, you love having it part of your life, just do it. You don’t have to be frivilous and I’m not suggesting your bills go unpaid to live a life of grandeur because that is your passion. I am talking about loving yourself enough to do what means a lot to you.

I’m saying that today you deserve to fulfill your dream and do something that makes you happy. You really do.

[Mrs. Micah’s note: I consider living to be a very important activity. For me that doesn’t always require money, but just an awareness that who I am isn’t my debt and that I don’t know if I’ll be alive tomorrow. It’s hard sometimes for any of us not live for the future, whether we’re in debt or have other goals. But the present moment is really all we’ve got here (eternity aside), so it’s best to stick to it. Plus, you have to be ready to enjoy the present in the future.]

Where is Mrs. Micah?

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Wooly Woman March 14, 2008 at 5:58 pm

I completely agree with this! We have a little amount set aside each month for purely fun spending for my husband and I each so we don’t feel completely chained down by our debt.

fathersez March 14, 2008 at 9:04 pm

Reading your post reminds me of a saying we have:

“Live as you would live forever, and pray as if this would be your last prayer”.

Steve March 15, 2008 at 3:35 am

A great post. Especially when someone wants desperately to get out of debt, they often swing so far the other way with trying to repay so much that they fail to live a life worth living.

A balanced life contains work and fun. Please room for fun along the way, it make the journey easier to live.

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