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I have a line on my budget called “Pleasures.” It’s where I put the money I spend getting a massage, buying those delicious ginger/peach candles and anything else that I want to splurge on in a month.
Journalists are always asking me what I spend money on, I guess because I’m The Debtonator! (my sound-guy, John, came up with that one), and I’m constantly signing the “don’t spend money you don’t have” song.
But there are things I love to do, so I budget for them. And I set some money aside each month for things I just feel like splurging on: fresh tulips on my kitchen counter, fabulous cheese, a new house plant.
As long as you’re not going into debt, and you’ve got all your bases covered – including long-term savings, your emergency fund, your insurance needs – you can spend your money on anything you want. Want to travel? Go. Want to drink expensive coffee? Do it. Want to buy a new sumthin’ or ’nother? Go ahead.
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You work hard for your money and you should enjoy all the pleasures it can bring you.
The only time spending becomes a problem is when you do it unconsciously and it interferes with your other goals. You can’t eat out four nights a week if you want to save up a downpayment on a home. And you can’t buy everything your heart desires if you have no emergency fund.
You need to go without for a while so you can reset your pleasure meter.