I guess this would be a continuation from the Materialism post, but I need for people to get their priorities straight. My FB status today said “Jessica doesn’t understand how people with no job, no money, and got folks threatening to turn stuff off and take stuff can go on vacation, but I can’t go nowhere!!” True…I’m broke, but it really burns me up when I see someone more broke than me dressing better, going places, and eating out all the time when I’m scared to do those things for fear of not having enough for my basic needs and fiscal obligations. Yes, I know it’s irresponsible on their part, and I know that they are only hurting themselves, but I guess that’s just it. Irresponsibility just gets on my nerves! I don’t understand how some people can be so oblivious. I have a friend (and I’ll keep the descriptions general to maintain the anonymity) who is so irresponsible it makes me sad and angry at the same time. Throughout our entire friendship this person has been seriously struggling financially. This friend like a lot of people was living in a place that was too expensive and had a car note that was SO not within budget range. My friend has expensive eating habits and refuses to compromise even though the compromise could save lots of money. This friend rarely understand the difference between a want and a need. This friend is in a bind even right now, but my friend just came back from vacation?! I wish someone could tell me how that makes sense. I make a lot of money, but I live on my own and I’m in a lot of debt, so the money I make I don’t see. I shop when I need to. I either grocery shop and eat at home, or I eat out–very rarely do I do both. When I eat out I don’t go crazy. And for you folks out there who swear by budgets let me intercept your thoughts right now because I hear you! I studied my habits for 3 months straight, and the amount I spend is groceries and the amount I spend eating out is almost the same, so I’m not spending more going out. Anyway, I don’t waste electricity, and the water I do waste must not amount to much since I haven’t had a water bill over $10 in 6 months. I tithe, and occasionally I give an offering. I invest in my own business which does tie up some of my funds, but that’s what investing does. I buy mostly only what I need, and when I get a want it’s within reason. I do not buy on impulse, and when I do I can afford it. I haven’t bought anything with credit since 2004. I have made HUGE fiscal mistakes and have a few mars on my credit report, but for the most part don’t I sound remotely responsible with my money?? I am always very content with my bland lifestyle in the name of being responsible and getting out of debt until I see/hear about folks who are seemingly carefree with less. Sometimes it makes me think that maybe something is wrong with ME!! You know, sometimes I try to live like them and just do whatever I want with my money, but a.) it never turns out well, and b.) I always feel so guilty. But you know what gets me out of those ruts? I think back on the victories I’ve had in my life! I think back on how this year I got the title to my car! I think on how last year I settled the debt on TWO credit cards! I look at my student loan and thank God that mine is not nearly as much as everyone elses I know. Yeah, I have my pity parties every now and then, but in the end I’m content to (in the words of Dave Ramsey) live like no one else so I can LIVE like no one else!! So…go ahead and go on your charged vacations…buy those fine clothes…eat those fine foods that you’ll be paying for for the rest of your life because in a few short years I’ll be free, and you’ll still be in bondage! I’m keeping my eyes on the prize baby!!