Barry Ritholtz has a good article titled “buy yourself a F*^king latte”, in which he takes Susie Orman and other finance folks to task for their comments on how saving on expensive coffee can result in huge savings, and how folks that indulge themselves are putting retirement money in jeopardy.
Like most folks in the FIRE community, Mrs. 39 Months and I have practiced a frugal existence, at least in terms of the society in general. I’m sure there are folks here that are way more frugal than we are, but we do OK. Still I believe (and have written about) the need to live your life now, not just save for some future date that may or may not be there. I don’t believe you should neglect your savings, but you can’t just go “all work and no fun” in life. Like a diet, you will burn out and end up cheating – and hating yourself afterward.
The key to FI is intentional living – understanding that you have the power to make the money decisions, and then making them in such a way to bring you joy throughout your lifetime. Save a lot and think about the fun you’ll have when you reach FI, but also spend some time, money and energy enjoying life today. Depending on your religion, this is the one chance you have to live it, so don’t restrict yourself too much.
Mr. 39 Months