Yesterday, after a lunch date at Jason’s Deli, my husband and I stopped by Best Buy to look into replacing my hanging-on-by-a-thread laptop that we’ve been saving up to replace over the last few months.
It’s been a long time since I’ve stepped foot in an electronics store and I was just a wee bit overwhelmed. Barely in the door, I was accosted by shiny gadgets promising to do just about everything but perform my morning workout routine (I’m still waiting for that to be invented!).
As I was browsing the aisles, seeing people paw excitedly over this blinking gadget and that flashing screen, and realizing you could spend your whole life savings in just one computer aisle alone, I was thinking about how this is just stuff.
Stuff that can serve a purpose, but can also suck your time and money.
Stuff that can bring some enjoyment, but which won’t make you happy long term.
Stuff that can aid you in your professional or personal life, but which won’t bring contentment.
Stuff that can clutter up your home, drain your energy and cost you an arm and a leg.
And right there in the middle of Best Buy, I had an epiphany: True frugality isn’t just about eating beans and rice and pinching pennies, it is recognizing that there is more to life than stuff. The quality of the life you live is much more important than the quantity of money or nice stuff you have.
I did buy a laptop (a Mac — believe it or not! — after being a PC girl all my life!), but I left the rest of the stuff on the shelves. Many of those other items might be useful, important or even necessary for other people in other situations, but, right now, I don’t need any of them. And I walked out completely free and content, paid-for laptop in hand.
photo by Moyan Brenn