My Mom had beautiful, long nails that she frequently painted a deep red but I don’t think she ever had a a proper manicure at a salon; that would be too much of a luxury. Every year, on the day she passed, we gather to celebrate her life by painting our nails red.
I still remember my first professional manicure. I was 21 and it was in a mall in San Jose. I, of course, had them done in deep red.
It was a splurge for sure and I felt happy, excited, glamorous, and just a little guilty because of the indulgence but, heck, it’s not like I had a family to feed.
Many years later I got a tattoo and my God Mother remarked, “Gosh when we were your age we’d be concerned about making rent.” As you can see, messages about money and what we do with it surround us and influence our decisions – sometimes without us being aware of them.
Both of my parents were raised during The Great Depression and both learned frugality and resourcefulness as a way of life. I’m grateful to have learned those skills.
They lived by the adage: “Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.” It helped that most everyone else was in the same boat. Now, I think people falsely believe they’re the only ones struggling to make ends meet and they feel a sense of shame about it.
An example of thrift: My Mom once painted a rug…and later a chair. This activity met the need for something “new” while giving her creativity a useful outlet (she was, afterall an artist). She also sewed drapery weights into the hem of her (polyester, it was the 70s) Mother-of-the-bride gown to keep it hanging straight and from having static cling.
Back to thrift vs. greed.
Thrift allows your inner creativity and resourcefulness to manifest a life of abundance; to make, in essence, “stone soup.”
Greed, on the other hand, is driven by pride which, at its core, means fear; fear that you won’t have enough, fear that others are judging you harshly, fear that you’ll be a failure, fear that you’ll make the “wrong” decision. Pride is an expensive vice and I tell you, no matter what your diet, humble pie is always on the menu.
Greed keeps you from having a manicure not because you don’t have the money but because you’re not willing to give your money to someone else so that they may pay their own bills, maybe get their own manicure.
Greed tells you that your money and values are worth more than anyone else’s.
Greed tells you that you’re not good enough, and then sends you conflicted messages about buying things to show that you’re “good enough” versus “foolishly” spending the money to buy those things. Sneaky bastard!
Quite simply: Greed steals your joy.
That’s why the members of the I HATE Budgeting (But I Like Having Money) support group and my clients spend time researching thier values and needs to determine when they’re making a decision out of joy/love or out of fear/greed.
Want some coaching on how to stay on the “Joy Road” ? Contact life coach Nancy Rizzo, that’s her specialty.
Need more than a blog post? Contact me.