Lifestyle creep is an easy trap to fall into and can be a slippery slope to having a comfortable retirement or not.
It’s when you get an increase of income and you automatically start to spend a bit more. It might be a new home, a new care eventhough your current car is perfect.
It is fun in the short run, but it’s one of the deadliest destroyers of long-term wealth.
Do this for too many years and you can jeopardize any hope of a comfortable retirement.
Fortunately, there are things you can do according to this article from Money Talk News.
Following the below steps can stop lifestyle creep in its tracks.
As always please reply with your thoughts and comments.
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Value Experiences Over Things…
Science has shown us that enjoying experiences brings people more joy than accumulating possessions.
So, say “so long” to dreams of a fancy home makeover or a ginormous home entertainment system. Instead, plan experiences with beloved family members and friends that will create memories that last a lifetime.
Of course, staying in the most expensive hotels during a trip to Paris with your best buds is the very definition of “lifestyle creep.” So, look for experiences that are meaningful, but that won’t drain your bank account.
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Cut Back On Social Media Use..
We’ve known for quite some time that too much social media can leave you feeling emotionally bankrupt. But Facebook, Instagram and other social networks also can take a toll on your finances.
A team of U.S. and Canadian researchers recently released a study that links increased use of social media to higher patterns of consumption.
For example, read about an acquaintance’s latest exotic vacation, and you may begin to feel the urge to spend. As the study authors lament, “a posting about a consumption event triggers a notification to friends; a non-posting about not engaging in a consumption event does not.”
So, to avoid this negative influence, you might want to unplug more often.
Take On A Side Gig…
Perhaps you just can’t stand seeing the Joneses get so far ahead of you. Or, maybe you believe that a life without splurges is no life at all.
If you can’t – or won’t – stop lifestyle creep from invading your life, at least neutralize its effect by taking on a part-time job or developing a side hustle. Doing so can help you maintain a better balance between money going out and cash coming in.
As we note in “10 Money-Making Side Gigs You Probably Haven’t Considered”:
“There are all sorts of other gigs with money-making potential emerging – strange tasks that may never have crossed your mind.”
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Keep Your Eyes Fixed On Father Time…
When you’re 18, old age is never going to arrive. When you’re 30, you realize it might – but not for a long, long time.
But get a little north of 35 or 40, and your AARP years suddenly don’t seem so far away.
Yes, Virginia, you will retire someday soon. Remembering that fact is one of the best ways to stay focused on the need to save for your golden years.
A 2018 survey by investment management firm Capital Group found that people who took the time to envision life in their 60s, 70s and 80s recommended earmarking 31% more per paycheck for retirement than people who didn’t picture their future in detail.
So, be brave and mature enough to look your future squarely in the eye. Retirement is coming, and lifestyle creep is trying to eat you alive before you reach those golden years.
Fortunately, you have the power to tame the beast, starting now. Let the battle be joined.