The Art of Wanting Nothing

October is here, that means fall colours are around the corner.
A new month is here and I'm still doing well in terms of not spending money for things I want. So far, I'm on a streak of 6 months without spending a nickel on myself.

How is this possible, sensei?

It's quite easy actually, grasshopper. Stay a while and listen.

The most important part is knowing you have enough.

Enough? What's enough?

Let's take my wardrobe as this first example. I have two dresser drawers of clothing and half our walk in closet is hung with my clothes. Additionally, wifey has taken some of my clothing and stored it in a plastic bin somewhere. I have enough clothes.

Wifey recently had a problem with her computer. It would crash unexpectedly or hang. Being the Loonie IT Guy, I performed some troubleshooting analysis and determined that there may be a problem with the RAM on the computer. I removed two modules of RAM and ever since, the computer hasn't crashed or otherwise stopped working. Since I removed two modules, instead of 16 GB of RAM, her computer is only running with 8 GB of RAM. Should I replace the damaged RAM modules with new ones? Considering wifey uses her computer mainly for web browsing, 8 GB of RAM is more than adequate. Her computer has enough RAM.

The iPhone 6 and BlackBerry Passport were released a while ago. Both contain lots of new frills and features. I have enough money saved up to buy myself either one of these smart phones. It would be a considerable upgrade considering I'm still working with a BlackBerry Tour I received for free in 2009. I only use my phone to send and receive text messages. For that reason, my current phone is enough.

But sensei, wouldn't it be better if you had new clothing each month or a computer with more RAM or a shiny new smart phone?

Of course it would be better. But it wouldn't be needed.

At work, no one really pays attention to what you wear every day. As long as you're not wearing the same clothes every day or going to work in a potato sack, no one is going to remember. By getting new clothing each month, you're just giving yourself spurts of false happiness at the expense of your wallet.

In term of wifey's computer, since she is only using the computer to browse the interwebs*, there's no noticeable difference between 8 GB of RAM and 16 GB of RAM in regards to web browsing. If she was in video editing or a graphics designer, then maybe we'd have a reason to replace the RAM.

As for the smart phone, I determined a while ago that I'd rather check my emails on my computer. Ditto for Twitter, news sites, online banking, etc. So for what reason do I even have my phone? It's for sending and receiving text messages and emergencies only. If that's the case, why do I need to spend $900+ for a new phone when I have plenty of unused phones at home that serve the same purpose?

Okay, sensei. We get it. You're cheap.

Obviously, you're not heeding my message.

Need a new suit or dress for work because you accidentally ruined the old one? That's an acceptable case of a need for yourself.

Power outage fry your surge protector? Probably need to spend the money on a new one. Otherwise, you risk frying your computer during the next power outage.

Dropped your mobile phone down a storm drain? Better find yourself a replacement phone.

It's okay to spend money on yourself for things you need.

You should ask yourself beforehand if you have enough.

Okay, you're cheap.


I prefer the term frugal.

*She doesn't even use it that much anymore. She mainly uses her Nexus 5 for her web browsing. The computer is still used when she's online shopping.


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