Sometimes I read stories on the internet about people failing on their spending bans or whining about how being in debt means they are in constant FOMO and it makes me really sad.
Sad that these people exist in the world. And that they’re typically from my generation.
When my parents came to this country, they had nothing. My mom ate rice and soy sauce as her meals and worked multiple jobs to get herself through school. My dad served in the Navy. I mean, there was a level of sacrifice that people in my generation do not have any concept of.
I’m not saying I in any way shared with the tough experiences they had. I had a much easier life because of their sacrifices. But I think it’s because I know what they went through, and because of how I was brought up, and knowing that money doesn’t grow on trees and we are so privileged to have anything at all that these little things we do to “save money” are not tough – they are ridiculously fun and wonderful.
I drove the same car for almost 18 years and I was ridiculously happy doing so. I spend on average $34/week on groceries and that’s luxurious. Deciding NOT to buy clothes for A FEW DAYS is an AMAZING PRIVILEGE. Skipping lattes and spa services for the rest of your life – all of this stuff should be super easy to do.
I read this story recently on a Quora answer to What Motivates You. It’s got a lot of really great answers to I recommend you reading it. But this one was the one that showed up in my feed and honestly it’s something I think anyone who can’t figure out how to stop getting manicures needs to read on a daily basis.
After I read this story, I wanted to try to find it again. I remembered the man’s name was Idris and that he was a cleaner in Bangladesh, which turned up this result:
It links to this article that discusses the worst job in the world – diving in liquid sewage to claw out blockages, without any protective gear and with only a stick for safety. I’m not sure this is the same Idris. But I can understand why Idris may have washed himself literally in public toilets to clean himself before going home.
Risking his life diving into raw sewage as his livelihood and this guy is still happy! How could I not be?