Why Being Frugal Is Making You Poorer

Frugal dinner
4 min read

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Frugal…

Frugal used to the be THE buzz word in obtaining wealth. But that is a word I despise, so I say f*** that!!! Harsh? Absurd? How dare I use such profanity in my opening? I know right? But read on and you’ll find out why I stopped being frugal and see my wealth grow thanks to it.

The Frugal Life, also known as “The Beginning”

Hi all! Q here! I grew up as a 2nd-generation immigrant in Australia. Times were tough for my parents. All I heard in my life when I was younger was:

  • Save your money.
  • Study and get into a good job (doctor, lawyer).
  • Money doesn’t grow on trees.
  • You can’t have that, we can’t afford it.
  • Don’t waste money!
  • Money isn’t easy to find you know!

And the list goes on, but you get the idea. I’ll be honest, we had tough times and penny-pinching was a TOP PRIORITY. Buying clothes and shoes at the flea market, buying groceries when it was on sale, using a cheaper brand, using coupons, counting every cent we had! Just to buy milk! (I know, the 1 cent coin actually existed back in the day!)

Naturally as I grew up, got married and moved out on my own, I started to exhibit the same characteristics and behavior. I would only buy things on sale, look at buying the cheaper toilet paper, spend time online hustling for a better deal and making my own food from scratch. The list goes on.

I was saving all my money, but NEVER building any wealth from it. Something was wrong! I didn’t know what and it was bloody depressing!

frugal pig

Stage 2: Knowledge is Power

But enough was enough. In 2013 I decided to make a change and invested in myself. I purchased my first online financial education course (Infinite Prosperity*) and my eyes were opened, I mean, they were opened before, but now, REALLY opened. EVERYTHING I knew about finances was a lie and I figured I had to start all over again. From the ground up some would say. Forget about the past and start again.

And that was tough.

One of the most important lessons I learnt from the course was to value my time. I never thought too much about it, but it is the ONLY commodity that the rich and poor share. The way you use it is what makes us different.

Thinking back about my frugal ways I realized how much time I was wasting just to save a few bucks. It just didn’t make sense to me and was not worth my time and effort.

Why would I trade my time to save a few bucks when I can use it to make more money?

knowledge is power

Stage 3: Time is money. Literally.

When I stopped being so “frugal”, I discovered all this free time. I wanted to grow my wealth and used this time to:

  1. Start a business
  2. Learn how to trade the markets

I had always wanted to do these two things, but “had no time”. So I decided to make a change, investing “in me” was one thing, but now, investing in my time, was the other.

The more time and effort I dumped into side hustles, the more money I made than what I would save by “being frugal”. I watched as my wealth started to grow.

And you know what? The small increases in premiums here and there didn’t have me jumping online looking for a better deal. Instead, they drove me to putting in more time in order to make more money, something I enjoyed.

Above all, watching my wealth grow little by little was the extra bonus. I mean, who doesn’t want to see their account grow, right?

Time is money

How I spend my time and how you could too

Leverage technology if I want to be “frugal”

These days I don’t worry about looking for the cheaper option to the bigger bargains, but sure I still love a bargain. I rely on technology and use apps to notify me about deals (like Honey*) I might be interested in. Otherwise, I still meal prep as I love to cook (I’m actually lazy so I cook in bulk so I don’t have to waste my time in the kitchen all day), but you’ll mostly find me spending most of my time working on my side hustles (like this blog!). Saving now just takes a small portion of my time.

Focus on building wealth

I’m more focused on making money rather than penny-pinching. Side hustles and investments are my areas of choice. Enjoy what life has to bring (like a 4 ply toilet paper rather than the cardboardy stuff) because the little things count, trust me, they really do. You just need to be smart with your time and earn as much as you can for the time you exchange. And if you can do it while sleeping, then even better!

Be like the rich and maximize each of your 86,400 seconds each day to build wealth rather than spend it all hunting for bargains that will save you $1!! Think about it and thank yourself later!

I will elaborate on the side hustle thing in future posts, so stay tuned and subscribe for our latest content!

Is your focus on “being frugal”, “building”, or both?

*Disclaimer: this is an affiliate link. I do earn a small commission if you sign up, at no cost to you. Please read the disclosure.

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