Being content with your finances

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
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masonstone
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Being content with your finances

Post by masonstone » Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:10 am

So I find myself always searching how to make more and not being content with current income. How do bogleheads find satisfaction with their income.

Livelife2fullest
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Livelife2fullest » Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:30 am

I know what you mean. Try shifting the focus from how I can make more money to how I can I find the most happiness (hobbies, doing more of what you like, etc). My point is that the reaching the next income level may be a never ending game and we may just end up wanting more. Increasing happiness can take some of the focus away from increasing income and can possibly lead to more career success and income.

student
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by student » Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:32 am

I think people who are content with their finances usually live below their means and do not keep up with the Jones.

Nowizard
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Nowizard » Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:39 am

A key issue is to determine if it is worry or reasonable concern since some of what you mention is a possibility. However, you are still young, and concern over finances is a legitimate issue. The mother of anxiety is uncertainty which means it always lies in the future in the sense of what could happen. A major antidote is a plan. Make a plan, do your best and focus on the fact that we have much more control over the process than the outcome with complex issues. Is your current, financial plan one you have thought out to a greater degree than your vocational plan, for instance? Both are related and similar.

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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by A440 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:51 am

It may or may not help to read Bogle's book "Enough"

When John Rockefeller (the richest man in America during his lifetime) was asked, "What will it take before you have enough?", his response was, "Just a little bit more".

Here is a link to an article with the title, "How much is enough"
https://www.shreveporttimes.com/story/n ... 930449001/
Last edited by A440 on Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Steve723
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Steve723 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:12 am

Some good advice here. It really is an amazing phenomena. 10 years ago I thought the net worth I have now would have been more than enough to retire on and be perfectly satisfied. Yet here I am still working away and feeling like may be I need more....

I think it's a classic case of getting used to a certain income/wealth level and then that becomes your new baseline expectation. Unless you're Jeff Bezos, there is always another level to aspire to!

I do think living below your means, defining yourself in ways not related to your job/income/wealth, and perhaps even managing through a personal crisis or two ultimately helps bring you to a point of contentment with your finances.

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TheTimeLord
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by TheTimeLord » Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:23 am

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:10 am
So I find myself always searching how to make more and not being content with current income. How do bogleheads find satisfaction with their income.
Income is a means to a life. Focus on if you are content with the life your income is providing not counting every penny that is coming in. FWIW, counterintuitively the more you have the worse this problem can become because it takes more to make a difference. At some point you have to step back and think about being appreciative for what you have.
Last edited by TheTimeLord on Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Jack FFR1846
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:26 am

Spend less. Simple as that. If you cut your spending in half, it's like doubling your income.
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Olemiss540
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Olemiss540 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:33 am

Sounds like you need to take a mental break from finances. Quit reading financial forums, planning retirement, thinking about income levels, etc.

Many times, contentment can be derived from being more aware of your thoughts and actions driving the opposite. When you start concerning yourself with money, try to make a concerted effort to focus your thoughts elsewhere. Dont let yourself work up new spreadsheets or browse these types of forums (for a while).

It helps if you fill your time with other hobbies or activities that drive healthier thoughts/emotions while on hiatus.
I hold index funds because I do not overestimate my ability to pick stocks OR stock pickers.

Topic Author
masonstone
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by masonstone » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:09 am

Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:26 am
Spend less. Simple as that. If you cut your spending in half, it's like doubling your income.
I currently only spend about 10% of my pre-tax income. It’s not that I’m not saving enough it’s that I keep wanting to make more.

Yooper16
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Yooper16 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:11 am

As others have suggested, being content with your finances means being content in other aspects.

For many years I worked for a high end retailor with product lines that included---Chanel, Armani, Hickey Freeman and so many more that I can't recall.

In 2002, after 130 years in business they went under. It was the best thing that ever happened to me.

Being in an atmosphere that promoted a "I want/deserve it all" and conspicuous consumption, it was easy to fall into the same mindset. I often wonder what the economy would be like if the "gotta have the newest bells and whistles" mentality were to end.

We live a much less complicated life now as opposed t 16 years ago because our income dropped many $0000s. I went from $1000 suits to blue jean work clothes.

Less stuff, less clutter, less desires puts the finances into perspective, for us anyhow.

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TheTimeLord
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by TheTimeLord » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:21 am

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:09 am
Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:26 am
Spend less. Simple as that. If you cut your spending in half, it's like doubling your income.
I currently only spend about 10% of my pre-tax income. It’s not that I’m not saving enough it’s that I keep wanting to make more.
Does your wife work?
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runner3081
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by runner3081 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:27 am

Though I don't think I will ever be fully content with our finances (there can always be more). We are in a good spot.

At this point, we save just under 70% of our income (wife stays at home). We have old cars, a reasonably sized house and don't feel that we are missing anything.

So, sort of, yes, we are content. But there is always more :)

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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by livesoft » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:29 am

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:09 am
I currently only spend about 10% of my pre-tax income. It’s not that I’m not saving enough it’s that I keep wanting to make more.
There is nothing really wrong with that. Why do you want to change?

The world needs people like you, so keep doing what your doing.
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LiterallyIronic
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by LiterallyIronic » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:34 am

I don't know and I can't figure out why I'm not content with it either. Wind the clock back to 2016 and I was making $50k. I thought this amount of money was insanely high and I was just swimming in it. Then in 2017 I was up to $60k. And then at the end of 2018 I got bumped to $75k. AND IT'S STILL NOT ENOUGH! :(

Because every time my income goes up, the only things that get increased are:
1) 401k contributions (which are now up to $7500/year; I need to get it closer to maxed);
2) taxes (which are 18%);
3) Roth IRA contributions (since it just went from $11000 to $12000); and
4) mortgage principal pre-payment (which is at $225 extra per month, but I want to crank it higher).

Standard of living expenses are completely unchanged from when I made $50k to now at $75k. My wife and I still just get our $30/month each of "fun money", we still never go out to eat, etc.

Where's the money for going on a European vacation? Where's the money for my DeLorean? Where's the money for adding insulation to one particular exterior wall that's at R2? Where's the money for redoing our insanely cracked driveway? Where's the money to put away for our kid's future?

There is never enough.

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TheTimeLord
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by TheTimeLord » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:41 am

livesoft wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:29 am
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:09 am
I currently only spend about 10% of my pre-tax income. It’s not that I’m not saving enough it’s that I keep wanting to make more.
There is nothing really wrong with that. Why do you want to change?

The world needs people like you, so keep doing what your doing.
Unless you have a spouse or partner covering your expenses, or are making at least upper 6 figures (more likely 7) I certainly can see why you are dissatisfied if you are only spending 10%. While you are doing a remarkable job saving you do not seem to be investing in your life today. If I was working like a dog to live like a pauper I would have a hard time being content since I wouldn't be getting to consume any of the fruits of my labor. What is the motivation behind your extreme rate of savings? What are you going to do with this money once you get it? Would it perhaps be better to do some of these things when you are younger than waiting? These are questions I would be asking myself in your situation. Living below your means is very smart, but people can and do have lives before retirement.
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Dottie57
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Dottie57 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:43 am

LiterallyIronic wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:34 am
I don't know and I can't figure out why I'm not content with it either. Wind the clock back to 2016 and I was making $50k. I thought this amount of money was insanely high and I was just swimming in it. Then in 2017 I was up to $60k. And then at the end of 2018 I got bumped to $75k. AND IT'S STILL NOT ENOUGH! :(

Because every time my income goes up, the only things that get increased are:
1) 401k contributions (which are now up to $7500/year; I need to get it closer to maxed);
2) taxes (which are 18%);
3) Roth IRA contributions (since it just went from $11000 to $12000); and
4) mortgage principal pre-payment (which is at $225 extra per month, but I want to crank it higher).

Standard of living expenses are completely unchanged from when I made $50k to now at $75k. My wife and I still just get our $30/month each of "fun money", we still never go out to eat, etc.

Where's the money for going on a European vacation? Where's the money for my DeLorean? Where's the money for adding insulation to one particular exterior wall that's at R2? Where's the money for redoing our insanely cracked driveway? Where's the money to put away for our kid's future?

There is never enough.
When you can max the 401k and fill the Roths, the pressire will ease off a bit. A Delorean? No. Going out to eatonce in a while - yes!
Last edited by Dottie57 on Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by jebmke » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:44 am

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:10 am
So I find myself always searching how to make more and not being content with current income. How do bogleheads find satisfaction with their income.
By giving it away. I also prepare taxes for people who have practically nothing.

edit: also, attend a few funerals of close friends.
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Darth Xanadu
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Darth Xanadu » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:48 am

LiterallyIronic wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:34 am
Wind the clock back to 2016

Where's the money for my DeLorean?
Sounds like you already have a DeLorean? :P
"A courageous teacher, failure is."

mak1277
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by mak1277 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:51 am

LiterallyIronic wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:34 am
I don't know and I can't figure out why I'm not content with it either. Wind the clock back to 2016 and I was making $50k. I thought this amount of money was insanely high and I was just swimming in it. Then in 2017 I was up to $60k. And then at the end of 2018 I got bumped to $75k. AND IT'S STILL NOT ENOUGH! :(

Because every time my income goes up, the only things that get increased are:
1) 401k contributions (which are now up to $7500/year; I need to get it closer to maxed);
2) taxes (which are 18%);
3) Roth IRA contributions (since it just went from $11000 to $12000); and
4) mortgage principal pre-payment (which is at $225 extra per month, but I want to crank it higher).

Standard of living expenses are completely unchanged from when I made $50k to now at $75k. My wife and I still just get our $30/month each of "fun money", we still never go out to eat, etc.

Where's the money for going on a European vacation? Where's the money for my DeLorean? Where's the money for adding insulation to one particular exterior wall that's at R2? Where's the money for redoing our insanely cracked driveway? Where's the money to put away for our kid's future?

There is never enough.
why don't you just prioritize different things? Go on vacation...patch up your driveway...you don't *have* to put more money into retirement every time you get a pay raise. Live the life you want to live first...then save for retirement second.

Rupert
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Rupert » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:54 am

jebmke wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:44 am
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:10 am
So I find myself always searching how to make more and not being content with current income. How do bogleheads find satisfaction with their income.
By giving it away. I also prepare taxes for people who have practically nothing.

edit: also, attend a few funerals of close friends.
+1. One way to become content with (and appreciate) what you have is to spend time with people who have a lot less than you.

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masonstone
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by masonstone » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:56 am

TheTimeLord wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:41 am


Unless you have a spouse or partner covering your expenses, or are making at least upper 6 figures (more likely 7) I certainly can see why you are dissatisfied if you are only spending 10%.
My income is in the low 7 figure range (DW and I spend about 120k per year).

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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by bloom2708 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:04 am

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:56 am
TheTimeLord wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:41 am


Unless you have a spouse or partner covering your expenses, or are making at least upper 6 figures (more likely 7) I certainly can see why you are dissatisfied if you are only spending 10%.
My income is in the low 7 figure range (DW and I spend about 120k per year).
Save $6 million. It should be easy making north of $1,000,000/per year. Then you can live off 3% and have the same lifestyle as you do now. That should take some of the stress off. With a high income and large saving, almost any strategy works. Therefore the strategy you pick will work.
"We are not here to agree with you; we are here to provoke thoughtfulness." Unknown Boglehead

Texanbybirth
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Texanbybirth » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:04 am

Rupert wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:54 am
jebmke wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:44 am
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:10 am
So I find myself always searching how to make more and not being content with current income. How do bogleheads find satisfaction with their income.
By giving it away. I also prepare taxes for people who have practically nothing.

edit: also, attend a few funerals of close friends.
+1. One way to become content with (and appreciate) what you have is to spend time with people who have a lot less than you.
+2, thank you both for saying that.
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knpstr
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by knpstr » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:11 am

This is a problem of philosophy.

Obviously, you have more than enough money to have a "content" life. The problem is your priorities/perspective. Ultimately the reason you aren't content with your finances is because you aren't content with your life -- as it is now.

This is something I have been studying lately. I'd recommend reading the ancient greeks and romans. You may like Seneca's Letters.

Best of luck !
Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking. -Marcus Aurelius

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TheTimeLord
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by TheTimeLord » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:14 am

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:56 am
TheTimeLord wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:41 am


Unless you have a spouse or partner covering your expenses, or are making at least upper 6 figures (more likely 7) I certainly can see why you are dissatisfied if you are only spending 10%.
My income is in the low 7 figure range (DW and I spend about 120k per year).
I am going to assume you work very hard to earn that money, perhaps in a highly competitive field. Unless you have a clearly defined motivation/reason for your incredible savings consider trying to enjoy a little more of your income, not a lot say 2-3% of your income. You may feel a little more content with your income if you got to utilize a little more of it today. But if you are saving towards something that is incredibly valuable or meaningful to you then keep going the way you are.
IMHO, Investing should be about living the life you want, not avoiding the life you fear. | Run, You Clever Boy! [9085]

penguindance49
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by penguindance49 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:32 am

mak1277 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:51 am
why don't you just prioritize different things? Go on vacation...patch up your driveway...you don't *have* to put more money into retirement every time you get a pay raise. Live the life you want to live first...then save for retirement second.
This is key for me. As a young person early in my career, I had a lot of trouble balancing *save literally everything* with having a life. "But penguin, it's possible to have a life without spending money!" Well, yeah, it is, but when you're 23, on your own without any friends, it's really hard to not spend anything. Early on was a tricky time for me, because I was paying off student loans, lived alone and didn't know anyone, was figuring out this whole balancing a budget thing, and should I start saving for retirement too?? For me, adding in the stressors of "When I was your age, I did X (and was way more successful)" brought me into a shame spiral when it came to my money. It's why I stepped away from other personal finance forums for a while, where everything seemed to either be a competition, or breeding grounds for "you could do better/you're not doing enough."

For me, I know recognize 1) it's okay to want things and NOT get them, 2) it's okay to want things and actually get them, 3) it's okay to not want things that everyone else wants, 4) it's okay to make "bad" choices once in a while. For example, I bought myself a new car AND took out a car loan to get it! Some people would want to rake me over the coals for that (or, at the very least, call me an idiot anonymously online). There are a lot of good reasons I justified that - the electric car incentive is ending, so I'd get a bigger credit if I bought it in 2018 instead of 2019 like I had initially planned, the dealership had a good deal... financially it made more sense to take the loan out (and pay it off in three months) than it did to wait and buy it in cash. "But penguin, you didn't need a NEW car! You could have bought used!" And yeah, I could have, but again, reasons that are personal and won't necessarily apply to everyone or have everyone agree (model is new, tax credits, etc).

I'd love to go vacation in Europe for a week (theoretically doable) or longer (probably not doable), but it's super expensive and doesn't seem to be in the cards for me right now. I'll be vacationing across the country (US) with family later on instead. I could bank all that money that I'll be spending on airfare, rentals, etc., or I could enjoy the time spent with family.

Saving responsibility comes with sacrifices and telling yourself no, but if you're constantly stressed by the thought of "not doing enough," there's something wrong with your approach. Give yourself a break and some credit - you're doing an incredible job. But something's gonna give soon, and it sounds like it might your sanity.

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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Cuzz35 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:34 am

I haven't heard anyone mention the old phrase of "putting yourself in someone else's shoes." If you were living my life and earning what I made, your 7 figure salary would be more than enough and that probably goes for the vast majority of people in the world.

I mean, are you truly dissatisfied with your income or just finding yourself wanting to make more? I think its perfectly natural to want to make more even at your level. I wouldn't beat yourself up about feeling that way. I think if your way of life is centered around how much you make and that's your passion then maybe its time to find some hobbies that don't involve making money.

A lot of the hedgefund private equity folks I know that is all they think about. They have more money than they know what to do with but they are constantly thinking about investment opportunities and how to make additional basis points on hundreds of millions. I think not because they are any more greedy than anyone else but simply that has been there life. If this troubles you than don't make it yours.

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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by dodecahedron » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:50 am

Rupert wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:54 am
jebmke wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:44 am
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:10 am
So I find myself always searching how to make more and not being content with current income. How do bogleheads find satisfaction with their income.
By giving it away. I also prepare taxes for people who have practically nothing.

edit: also, attend a few funerals of close friends.
+1. One way to become content with (and appreciate) what you have is to spend time with people who have a lot less than you.
Agree with the above. In addition, for me, taking public transit when I can fit it into my life is a good way to spend time with folks who generally have far fewer choices in life than I do. It is also greener than driving.

flyingaway
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by flyingaway » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:02 pm

When I was in my 20s, yes, I was not content.
Now I am almost 55, yes, I am content with my income and my finances.

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8foot7
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by 8foot7 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:03 pm

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:56 am
TheTimeLord wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:41 am


Unless you have a spouse or partner covering your expenses, or are making at least upper 6 figures (more likely 7) I certainly can see why you are dissatisfied if you are only spending 10%.
My income is in the low 7 figure range (DW and I spend about 120k per year).
I mean this with all the kindness in the world; is it possible you are suffering from depression? Perhaps a talk with a therapist or mental health professional might be a good way to spend a few dollars. I hope you can find the peace you seek.

Broken Man 1999
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:13 pm

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:09 am
Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:26 am
Spend less. Simple as that. If you cut your spending in half, it's like doubling your income.
I currently only spend about 10% of my pre-tax income. It’s not that I’m not saving enough it’s that I keep wanting to make more.
Are you very competitive? If so, are you comparing your financial position to others?

Remember, there will always be someone who makes more $$$ than you. But put your ideas about income in perspective: Absolutely, there are many who have an income higher than you. But that number pales in comparison of those who have far, far, less income. So you are in a very good place financially, despite your desire to have more income.

I hope you can find for yourself a balance of believing you have enough income, and being interested in the other aspects of life.

Broken an 1999
“If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven than I shall not go. " -Mark Twain

Afty
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Afty » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:16 pm

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:10 am
So I find myself always searching how to make more and not being content with current income. How do bogleheads find satisfaction with their income.
I think you should do some introspection. Why are you not content with current income? It sounds like you have far more money than you need. What would "satisfaction" look like to you?

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Sandtrap
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Sandtrap » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:19 pm

A "healthy" level of dissatisfaction in many things can become a powerful motivator to achieve and grow both personally and otherwise throughout life, to the benefit of self and others.

Whereas . . . complacency (without contentment), . . apathy. . . . etc. . . :shock:

j :happy
Last edited by Sandtrap on Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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LiterallyIronic
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by LiterallyIronic » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:19 pm

Darth Xanadu wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:48 am
LiterallyIronic wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:34 am
Wind the clock back to 2016

Where's the money for my DeLorean?
Sounds like you already have a DeLorean? :P
LOL! :D
mak1277 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:51 am
why don't you just prioritize different things? Go on vacation...patch up your driveway...you don't *have* to put more money into retirement every time you get a pay raise. Live the life you want to live first...then save for retirement second.
I can't. :( I didn't finish university until I was 32. I'm 35 now and only have $72k saved for retirement. I've got to keep the pedal to the metal to try to catch up to where I should be. That Fidelity chart that gets posted a lot says I should have 2x my income saved by age 35 and I don't even have 1x yet.

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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Sandtrap » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:22 pm

LiterallyIronic wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:19 pm
Darth Xanadu wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:48 am
LiterallyIronic wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:34 am
Wind the clock back to 2016

Where's the money for my DeLorean?
Sounds like you already have a DeLorean? :P
LOL! :D
mak1277 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:51 am
why don't you just prioritize different things? Go on vacation...patch up your driveway...you don't *have* to put more money into retirement every time you get a pay raise. Live the life you want to live first...then save for retirement second.
I can't. :( I didn't finish university until I was 32. I'm 35 now and only have $72k saved for retirement. I've got to keep the pedal to the metal to try to catch up to where I should be. That Fidelity chart that gets posted a lot says I should have 2x my income saved by age 35 and I don't even have 1x yet.
Consistent efforts in a profitable direction can have exponential results over time.

I suspect that many retirees (or later life folks but no retired) here with substantial wealth and earnings did not start until after you did.

Persevere!
Wiki Bogleheads Wiki: Everything You Need to Know

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Watty
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Watty » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:24 pm

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:09 am

So I find myself always searching how to make more and not being content with current income. How do bogleheads find satisfaction with their income.
.....
I currently only spend about 10% of my pre-tax income. It’s not that I’m not saving enough it’s that I keep wanting to make more.
......
My income is in the low 7 figure range (DW and I spend about 120k per year).
I don't mean this to sound snarky but you might get some counseling to help figure out why you feel like this and why you are asking this question now.

One thing I would also consider would be if you are on a career path where people are either moving up, or they are moving out. That could be part of the reason you are feeling this way.
jebmke wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:44 am
edit: also, attend a few funerals of close friends.
+1

They were not close friends but I had one year in my 50's when I went to three funerals of people that I knew like neighbors or coworkers that were about my age. That does get your attention.

Even if you are a lot younger than that try do something like go to a high school class reunion or reconnect with people from high school. Even if you are just in your 30's you will start hearing stories of people you knew who have already died or have major lifelong health problems.

My income and savings was not anywhere near that but by the time I was in my late 50s I got to the point where working a few more years would not make a significant difference in my financial situation for the rest of my life. At that point work because a lot less interesting and the corporate BS became a lot harder to tolerate so I made my exit plans and I retired.

Topic Author
masonstone
Posts: 411
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2018 4:01 pm

Re: Being content with your finances

Post by masonstone » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:26 pm

Broken Man 1999 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:13 pm
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:09 am
Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:26 am
Spend less. Simple as that. If you cut your spending in half, it's like doubling your income.
I currently only spend about 10% of my pre-tax income. It’s not that I’m not saving enough it’s that I keep wanting to make more.
Are you very competitive? If so, are you comparing your financial position to others?

Remember, there will always be someone who makes more $$$ than you. But put your ideas about income in perspective: Absolutely, there are many who have an income higher than you. But that number pales in comparison of those who have far, far, less income. So you are in a very good place financially, despite your desire to have more income.

I hope you can find for yourself a balance of believing you have enough income, and being interested in the other aspects of life.

Broken an 1999
I think being the hyper-competitive type is part of my problem. The other problem is that I don't compare myself with those who make less than me, but with those who make more. Even if it's a near and dear friend who makes less than me, I don't compare my finances with them.

JoeRetire
Posts: 2969
Joined: Tue Jan 16, 2018 2:44 pm

Re: Being content with your finances

Post by JoeRetire » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:30 pm

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:10 am
So I find myself always searching how to make more and not being content with current income. How do bogleheads find satisfaction with their income.
Maybe its just age. At some point you learn what "enough" means.

KlangFool
Posts: 13378
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 12:35 pm

Re: Being content with your finances

Post by KlangFool » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:33 pm

OP,

If and when your portfolio income/growth is much bigger than your salary income, how would you feel then?

KlangFool

Topic Author
masonstone
Posts: 411
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2018 4:01 pm

Re: Being content with your finances

Post by masonstone » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:34 pm

JoeRetire wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:30 pm
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:10 am
So I find myself always searching how to make more and not being content with current income. How do bogleheads find satisfaction with their income.
Maybe its just age. At some point you learn what "enough" means.
Just as a reference, I'm 36, maybe with age I'll become less competitive and find more satisfaction with the current state of things. BTW I just bought the book Titled "Enough" by Bogle. Maybe it'll help me find contentment :)
Last edited by masonstone on Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Topic Author
masonstone
Posts: 411
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2018 4:01 pm

Re: Being content with your finances

Post by masonstone » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:35 pm

KlangFool wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:33 pm
OP,

If and when your portfolio income/growth is much bigger than your salary income, how would you feel then?

KlangFool
To be honest, I'm not sure.

User avatar
TheTimeLord
Posts: 6294
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by TheTimeLord » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:36 pm

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:26 pm
Broken Man 1999 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:13 pm
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:09 am
Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:26 am
Spend less. Simple as that. If you cut your spending in half, it's like doubling your income.
I currently only spend about 10% of my pre-tax income. It’s not that I’m not saving enough it’s that I keep wanting to make more.
Are you very competitive? If so, are you comparing your financial position to others?

Remember, there will always be someone who makes more $$$ than you. But put your ideas about income in perspective: Absolutely, there are many who have an income higher than you. But that number pales in comparison of those who have far, far, less income. So you are in a very good place financially, despite your desire to have more income.

I hope you can find for yourself a balance of believing you have enough income, and being interested in the other aspects of life.

Broken an 1999
I think being the hyper-competitive type is part of my problem. The other problem is that I don't compare myself with those who make less than me, but with those who make more. Even if it's a near and dear friend who makes less than me, I don't compare my finances with them.
Hyper-Competitive about what, having the best account balance or best life? Try to figure out what that is for you and develop a plan because it seems obvious you have the ability to achieve it. Second, the top level competes against themselves, not others, they set their own goals and measurements and define themselves. Do you think Tom Brady starts the year wanting to win the passing title or the Super Bowl? You think he cares who threw more TDs or for more yards than him this year? He has figured out what matters to him and lives to achieve it as opposed to piling up stats or demanding to be the highest paid QB in the league. He has a life of true focus.
IMHO, Investing should be about living the life you want, not avoiding the life you fear. | Run, You Clever Boy! [9085]

Topic Author
masonstone
Posts: 411
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2018 4:01 pm

Re: Being content with your finances

Post by masonstone » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:38 pm

TheTimeLord wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:36 pm
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:26 pm
Broken Man 1999 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:13 pm
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:09 am
Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:26 am
Spend less. Simple as that. If you cut your spending in half, it's like doubling your income.
I currently only spend about 10% of my pre-tax income. It’s not that I’m not saving enough it’s that I keep wanting to make more.
Are you very competitive? If so, are you comparing your financial position to others?

Remember, there will always be someone who makes more $$$ than you. But put your ideas about income in perspective: Absolutely, there are many who have an income higher than you. But that number pales in comparison of those who have far, far, less income. So you are in a very good place financially, despite your desire to have more income.

I hope you can find for yourself a balance of believing you have enough income, and being interested in the other aspects of life.

Broken an 1999
I think being the hyper-competitive type is part of my problem. The other problem is that I don't compare myself with those who make less than me, but with those who make more. Even if it's a near and dear friend who makes less than me, I don't compare my finances with them.
Hyper-Competitive about what, having the best account balance or best life? Try to figure out what that is for you and develop a plan because it seems obvious you have the ability to achieve it. Second, the top level competes against themselves, not others, they set their own goals and measurements and define themselves. Do you think Tom Brady starts the year wanting to win the passing title or the Super Bowl? You think he cares who threw more TDs or for more yards than him this year? He has figured out what matters to him and lives to achieve it as opposed to piling up stats or demanding to be the highest paid QB in the league. He has a life of true focus.
I agree with you that true life happiness doesn't come from competing with others, but finding satisfaction/gratefulness with what you have. But I also believe we're genetically engineered to compare ourselves with others. Finally, I'm not dumb enough to think I'm remotely near the tippy top of the people you find on Forbes magazine.

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Sandtrap
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Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Sandtrap » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:42 pm

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:26 pm
Broken Man 1999 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:13 pm
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:09 am
Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:26 am
Spend less. Simple as that. If you cut your spending in half, it's like doubling your income.
I currently only spend about 10% of my pre-tax income. It’s not that I’m not saving enough it’s that I keep wanting to make more.
Are you very competitive? If so, are you comparing your financial position to others?

Remember, there will always be someone who makes more $$$ than you. But put your ideas about income in perspective: Absolutely, there are many who have an income higher than you. But that number pales in comparison of those who have far, far, less income. So you are in a very good place financially, despite your desire to have more income.

I hope you can find for yourself a balance of believing you have enough income, and being interested in the other aspects of life.

Broken an 1999
I think being the hyper-competitive type is part of my problem. The other problem is that I don't compare myself with those who make less than me, but with those who make more. Even if it's a near and dear friend who makes less than me, I don't compare my finances with them.
Look up and forward to your own milestones.
A champion in your own efforts to top yourself every day.
Not time to look at others or compare.

Just as an athlete looks to exceed his personal best.
Wiki Bogleheads Wiki: Everything You Need to Know

User avatar
TheTimeLord
Posts: 6294
Joined: Fri Jul 26, 2013 2:05 pm

Re: Being content with your finances

Post by TheTimeLord » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:44 pm

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:38 pm
TheTimeLord wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:36 pm
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:26 pm
Broken Man 1999 wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:13 pm
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:09 am


I currently only spend about 10% of my pre-tax income. It’s not that I’m not saving enough it’s that I keep wanting to make more.
Are you very competitive? If so, are you comparing your financial position to others?

Remember, there will always be someone who makes more $$$ than you. But put your ideas about income in perspective: Absolutely, there are many who have an income higher than you. But that number pales in comparison of those who have far, far, less income. So you are in a very good place financially, despite your desire to have more income.

I hope you can find for yourself a balance of believing you have enough income, and being interested in the other aspects of life.

Broken an 1999
I think being the hyper-competitive type is part of my problem. The other problem is that I don't compare myself with those who make less than me, but with those who make more. Even if it's a near and dear friend who makes less than me, I don't compare my finances with them.
Hyper-Competitive about what, having the best account balance or best life? Try to figure out what that is for you and develop a plan because it seems obvious you have the ability to achieve it. Second, the top level competes against themselves, not others, they set their own goals and measurements and define themselves. Do you think Tom Brady starts the year wanting to win the passing title or the Super Bowl? You think he cares who threw more TDs or for more yards than him this year? He has figured out what matters to him and lives to achieve it as opposed to piling up stats or demanding to be the highest paid QB in the league. He has a life of true focus.
I agree with you that true life happiness doesn't come from competing with others, but finding satisfaction/gratefulness with what you have. But I also believe we're genetically engineered to compare ourselves with others. Finally, I'm not dumb enough to think I'm remotely near the tippy top of the people you find on Forbes magazine.
The essence of what I am trying to say is to me money is not an end unto itself, the end you want may require a great deal of money but the money is just a means to that end. Try to understand what it is you are really chasing after so you can enjoy the journey, avoid detours and understand when you have arrived.
IMHO, Investing should be about living the life you want, not avoiding the life you fear. | Run, You Clever Boy! [9085]

KlangFool
Posts: 13378
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 12:35 pm

Re: Being content with your finances

Post by KlangFool » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:44 pm

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:35 pm
KlangFool wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:33 pm
OP,

If and when your portfolio income/growth is much bigger than your salary income, how would you feel then?

KlangFool
To be honest, I'm not sure.
masonstone,

You need to change the yardstick and benchmark of your self-worth before you reach that point. It should not be based on income and/or net worth.

One of my peers accepted a job offer from a startup on Friday. The startup was bought out on Monday. His stock option is worth 10 million and fully guaranteed without working a single day with that startup. He worked for the startup for one year just to get that 10 million vested.

Is my peer a better person than you by the virtue of that 10 million?

KlangFool

Topic Author
masonstone
Posts: 411
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2018 4:01 pm

Re: Being content with your finances

Post by masonstone » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:47 pm

KlangFool wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:44 pm
masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:35 pm
KlangFool wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:33 pm
OP,

If and when your portfolio income/growth is much bigger than your salary income, how would you feel then?

KlangFool
To be honest, I'm not sure.
masonstone,

You need to change the yardstick and benchmark of your self-worth before you reach that point. It should not be based on income and/or net worth.

One of my peers accepted a job offer from a startup on Friday. The startup was bought out on Monday. His stock option is worth 10 million and fully guaranteed without working a single day with that startup. He worked for the startup for one year just to get that 10 million vested.

Is my peer a better person than you by the virtue of that 10 million?

KlangFool
Not a better person, but more financially successful :P

KlangFool
Posts: 13378
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 12:35 pm

Re: Being content with your finances

Post by KlangFool » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:48 pm

masonstone wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:38 pm

I agree with you that true life happiness doesn't come from competing with others, but finding satisfaction/gratefulness with what you have. But I also believe we're genetically engineered to compare ourselves with others. Finally, I'm not dumb enough to think I'm remotely near the tippy top of the people you find on Forbes magazine.
masonstone,

I disagreed. I have a richer and more successful older brother. If I choose to live my life by comparing with my older brother, I am guaranteed to be unhappy. I have a choice in life. Be happy and live my own life. Or, be unhappy and live someone's else opinion of how I should live my life.

I choose to be happy!

KlangFool

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Chief_Engineer
Posts: 47
Joined: Wed Jan 15, 2014 9:32 pm

Re: Being content with your finances

Post by Chief_Engineer » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:55 pm

OP sounds like you are very career/achievement oriented. Do you want a large income because of the money, or because of the status?

I suggest finding a hobby or cause that you can be passionate about and divert some of your drive there. Careers end and there are only so many rungs to a ladder. What will you do if you reach the top and have nothing to reach for? And as others have said, work on not comparing yourself to others. Or if you do, compare yourself to the average person and be mindful of how much you already have.

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