People are always looking for “tips and tricks” to make saving faster and easier. I mean, of course, they are. Because we all want to work smarter, not harder. Plus, saving is hard.
And so have most (all?) of the other voices out there on the Internet writing about money.
But as we move toward the holidays, I’ve been thinking a lot about contentment. It dawned on me, that the most powerful trick to saving, is simply being content with what you have.
If you are content with what you have, you will have all that you need.
It took me a couple minutes, but I realized I hadn’t just stumbled into a little slice of brilliance, as my deep thought was essentially a Rolling Stones lyric: “You can’t always get what you want (x3), but if you try sometime, you just might find you get what you need.” (Will probably be stuck in your head all day. Sorry!)
I can’t speak for The Rolling Stones, but my take is that the point is not to kill all your dreams. Choosing contentment doesn’t mean you will never have more than what you have now, or that a particular thing or experience that isn’t part of your current reality will never be an option.
The point—the whole reason this is such a powerful concept—is that the quickest way to achieve a future with more options is by being content today. Waiting, saving, prioritizing, and saving some more.
If you are content where you are, you consume less, and you aren’t as consumed with consuming, and as a result, you aren’t spending. And what do you know? When you aren’t spending, you are saving! Woot!
What would happen if we spent less time trying to “hack” a saving strategy, or “trick” ourselves into saving, and funneled that energy into being content with where we are right now, for right now? Probably a whole heck of a lot more saving.
Something to think about.