This weekend, I want you to collect all of your bank statements, credit card bills, Quicken reports, net worth statements, and piles of loans; hand them to a complete stranger. Let him read over everything, sift through your budgeting, and throw in a lot of hmms and mmms. What will he think? Are you spending money intelligently? Are you earning money intelligently?
I feel like I am always nitpicking at the financial behaviors I see in others’one friend spends too much on cigarettes and Mountain Dew. My cousin eats out too much, and my old roommate buys expensive furniture on credit that she’ll be paying off for years along with the newer, cooler car she just upgraded to.
Then I see people making money by selling plasma. Others spend their whole lives working to make their bosses rich (note to self: stop doing that!).
Yet I look at my own financial situation and find nothing wrong. I’m perfect! And I suppose that you are perfect, too!
The truth is’I attempt to admit to myself’is that it’s easier to find faults in the spending and earning habits of others than pin down problems in ourselves. But imagine handing over your finances to a complete stranger. He might find you and I have similar silly spending habits.
I’m not trusting any stranger. I’m pasting a fake mustache on myself and calling this new guy “Mr. Frank”. Mr. Frank is examining my habits. Heck, he’s already bombarded my kitchen to report an exceeding abundance of pasta and corn. He’s still trying to help me pinpoint illogical financial decisions. Has he found anything to report to you?