November 16, 2023

Simple Joys, Rich Lessons: A Friendship's Guide to Financial Wisdom

simple joy

Hey Everyone!

Today, I want to share something a bit more personal, yet incredibly relevant to our financial journeys. It’s a tale about childhood friends, life's milestones, and how simple joys can teach us profound lessons in managing money.

One of my closest friends got married today. We've all grown up in the same neighborhood, a tight-knit group with diverse careers—from IT professionals to manufacturing engineers, a civil engineer, a silk saree weaver, and a wedding photographer, who's the groom today. Despite our varied paths, one thing has remained constant: our love for simplicity.

Even though we can now afford fancy meals at star-rated restaurants, we still prefer the local food near our homes. It’s not just about the cost; it’s about the taste and the memories attached. Take, for instance, Kothu Parotta, which is my favorite restaurant menu item. I can order it for Rs.200-450 through a delivery app, excluding GST and delivery fees, which is a common price in metropolitan cities. However, just a 10-minute ride from my home, the same dish costs only Rs. 80. This stark comparison serves as a perfect metaphor for financial wisdom. It’s essential to understand our priorities and consistently save and invest, even in small amounts.

Our group has always had a knack for budgeting – even for our fun times. I fondly recall our Goa trip in 2012. Eight of us spent six incredible days on a total budget of Rs. 20,000, amounting to just Rs. 2500 per person, which included train fare, lodging, bike rentals, and more. That trip remains one of our best memories. It wasn't about luxury; it was about the experience and the company.

Now, with families of our own, our gatherings may have become less frequent, but the essence hasn't changed. Our parties, often held at Yercaud, a charming hill station in Salem, are still marked by simplicity. We stick to our favorite local hotel, where a meal costs Rs.100, despite having options like Radisson or Grand Estancia. It’s a conscious choice to value the experience over extravagance.

This brings me to the heart of my message: Happiness isn’t about how much you spend; it’s about the people you’re with. In a world where we're often pushed towards consumerism, it's vital to remember that the best things in life aren't things at all.

Applying These Lessons to Our Finances

Prioritize Experiences Over Expenses: Just like our Goa trip, focus on the value of experiences rather than their cost.
Savor the Simple Joys: A 10-minute ride for affordable food teaches us to seek joy in simplicity, not extravagance.
Budget Wisely, Even in Fun Times: Our budget-friendly parties are a testament to enjoying life without breaking the bank.
Invest in Relationships: Ultimately, the wealth of our lives is measured in relationships and memories, not just bank balances.

My friends and I may have taken different career paths, but our approach to money has been unified by our shared experiences. We choose value, simplicity, and joy over needless extravagance. And in these choices, there are lessons for all of us. In your financial journey, remember, it’s not always about having more, but about making the most of what you have.




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