Can giving up your coffee really make you rich?
OK, we’ve all heard it. Giving up your coffee will lead to you having the riches of Croesus because that £3 could CHANGE YOUR LIFE.
But can giving up your coffee really make you rich?
Short answer: a bit, yeah.
Slightly more philosophical answer: richer financially but if you enjoy your coffee hugely, you will be poorer in terms of quality of life.
Expanded blog article type answer:
When I first heard the giving up your coffee idea, I was BLOWN AWAY. I did the maths. £3 a day (easier than multiplying £2.80), 5 days a week comes to £15.
With 48 working weeks a year that’s £720. Invest that, make a ton of money, retire early just FROM GIVING UP COFFEE!!!!
It’s a lovely idea and there is some truth in it, but the issue is that getting into a good place financially is about more than just giving up your coffee. But since coffee is the example I will use it as a metaphor for the rest of it.
I love coffee. I love coffee made by men with beards and funny holes in their ears. And women. Often (in London) there are gender neutral people making coffee too. Coffee unifies all these people and good coffee is a pickmeup, a sweet flavour hit, a caffeine wallop and a nice place to take time out of bonkers city life.
But I don’t need an artisan brewed coffee every day. I love it but I also like tea, green tea, water, filter coffee, juice and other things steeped in hot water like lemon, ginger, mushrooms etc.
So do I need to totally give up my daily coffee? No.
But do I need it daily? No.
I drink lush, beardyman/woman/x coffee once or so a week now. But it used to be every day.
That’s a bit of a saving, but I still get the luxury in my life.
Ditto posh lunches. Posh lunches sometimes – sangers from home other times.
A nice jumper when my favourite jumper goes bobbly but if I don’t need a new jumper, don’t buy a new jumper.
It’s hard when you are not a naturally moderate person to try and introduce moderation into your life but boy oh boy it’s easier than total abstinence.
But here’s the trick.
When you DON’T do the thing you normally do every day, use the money to do something else.
I got divorced a few years back. (I even run a website for divorcees if you are going through it – check it out: divorceclub.com)
Divorce is hard and heartbreaking but one of the amazing things I got out of starting a new life was a sudden interest (and need) to re-evaluate my finances. I rented somewhere really cheap, and started getting interested in investing in all sorts of stuff: wine/ art/ stocks and shares. Not all of this has to be expensive although some of it was because I had some money left over from the divorce.
Not all of my investments were very good either. I didn’t know anything about stocks and shares (I still don’t) so it was posh gambling really. I also made some really dud investments into carbon credits which turned out to be a big scam. Oops.
But some of my investments were good (art is a good one and can be really cheap to get into – find out more here) and I found that I enjoyed taking a more active part in money than just earning it and spending it.
I also massively increased the amount I was putting into my pension because I did a bit of homework and realised I didn’t want to retire on £3000 a year.
And the best bit of it all – it was actually fun!
Making yourself richer can be fun, but you might have to do less of the other fun stuff
So where’s all this going? Well the long and short of it is that getting into being in charge of your money can be really, really liberating. It’s cool to know when you can retire and it’s fun to buy a poster that’s worth 6 times what you paid for it just a couple of years later.
If you get that kind of buzz out of it, then it’s actually not too much of a hardship to buy a few less jumpers, or cups of coffee, or dinners in restaurants or whatever.
That money is going into your “money hobby” and if you play your cards right, that means you’ll get richer as well as enjoying the journey.
So can giving up your coffee make you rich?
I’m not convinced giving up your coffee alone could do it, but it’s a starting point. Food for thought.
The real question is – what can you do less of so that you have a play fund?
A play fund is your pot of money which you can set aside with the intention of growing it. You could be smart and up your pension contributions or you could have a small slush fund to invest on the stock market – risky if you don’t know what you’re doing, but if you keep the amounts small, you might learn while you invest. It didn’t work for me, but it was fun!
There are tons of ways to invest money, from ultra low risk to super high risk. Think about what appeals to you? It doesn’t have to all be dry financial market stuff. As I said earlier, I bought some art. My partner is addicted to buying urban art (Banksy type stuff) and modern art. The cheapest poster he bought recently was £10 and are now going on Ebay for £800! I’ve written more about it here: how to make money buying and selling art.
Have a think about what you could free up and what might be a buzz for you to try.
It could be a money spinner.
It’s early days for this blog, but I plan to write more detailed posts about all these other ways of investing your money. Just nudge me if you’re interested and I forget to link to them here!
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