plonkee money an english-er's thoughts on personal finance

September 27, 2007

standing up to the green-eyed monster

Filed under: plonkee — plonkee @ 12:00 pm

Being envious is dangerous.

I’ve got a friend who is a few years older than me who has been in a long term relationship for about 10 years. Together they own the house that they live in and have another investment property. They have a sports car, which their selling to replace with a BMW. In the past year they’ve been on four foreign holidays.

There are a few key reasons why my friends can afford so much more than me. Because they are a few years older, they purchased their first house prior to the recent housing boom. They have friends who work for airlines and so they can get discounted travel. They earn on half as much again as I do, each. There are two of them, and this gives savings. They also carry credit card debt and have a car loan.

I’ve been deeply envious of my friend since we met. I want a nice house, a relationship, foreign holidays, and all the trappings of success. Its a good job that my fear of debt has meant that I haven’t acted on my jealous feelings, I reckon I’d be owing the credit card companies thousands and thousands.

On the other hand, I’m still allowing my envy to affect my own life. When I don’t look at their lifestyle, I am actually happy with mine. I don’t really want their house (because mine is beautiful) or car (driving kills the planet). I’d love to go on holiday a lot, but I genuinely prefer – and can afford – budget travel. I may not have a boyfriend, but I have my much valued independence and many wonderful friends. I’d rather be young, on balance.

I vow that from this day on I will no longer look at their lifestyle with envy. Instead I will remind myself that I am living my dreams. It might be in a small way, but they’re still being realised.

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