If you’ve spent any amount of time living a paycheck-to-paycheck lifestyle, you know that there are some things that make you feel like you are doing well for yourself. You may even find yourself feeling wealthy even if you aren’t.
In a recent online discussion, people shared what made them feel they had a sense of affluence. Here are ten of their top responses.
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Not Checking the Bank Balance
Quite a few people responded that they feel wealthy if they don’t have to check their bank balance before making a purchase.
One person said, “Not having to check or recall my current bank balance before I take myself or others out to eat. It’s nice basing your diet on what you’d like to eat instead on what you have to fit into a very limited budget.”
Someone else replied, “The other day I was at the checkout and 15 items came out to $70 and I was like “Wow, that’s a lot” but just swiped my card like normal because I knew I had enough in my account.”
Food In the Fridge
Having food in the fridge is a sign of having made it for many people, and having choices to choose from in there means you must be doing really good for yourself.
One commenter said, “Having food in the fridge is massive. A lot of people might take that stuff for granted. Having anything other than old condiments is a blessing.”
Another said, “I grew up in a single mother household with hardly any food in the house. Now I’m a single mother and I make sure that the fridge, freezer, and pantry is always packed with yummy food.”
Having no debt was an extremely popular answer to what makes you feel wealthy even though you aren’t.
One man said, “Being debt free is freedom and freedom is priceless.”
Another said, “I paid off my car early. I’ve always taken good care of my car, but I’ve noticed since I’ve paid it off I vacuum it more often, never leave trash inside of it, and leave random stuff in it for less than a day. It’s basically empty and clean with nothing but my car accessories/essentials at all times.”
Leaving the Lights On
For some people, even having electricity is enough to make them feel wealthy. For others, not having to worry about leaving the lights on makes them feel like they are rich.
One person said, “I still have a habit of frantically turning off all the lights, because old habits die hard.”
Another said, “I fell asleep on the couch last night and woke up at my normal time this morning, which is now before dawn, and the whole house was lit up. I just chuckled and moved on with my day.”
Having a Washer and Dryer
Having a washer and dryer at home means that you can do laundry anytime you want. For some people, that is a really big deal.
One woman said, “Having a washer and dryer in our laundry room—after years of trying to share a washer and dryer with others in an apartment complex or schlepping it to a laundromat always filled with odd men.”
Another person said, “Having to walk laundry downstairs instead of in the car then sitting at the laundromat for two hours is amazing.”
Being Able to Adjust the Thermostat
As kids, we all just thought our parents were crazy about the thermostat. As adults, you realize it’s about keeping the bill reasonable. Not having to worry about the cost of staying comfortable is amazing.
One man said, “For me, it’s setting the temperature of my house at whatever I want. My dad was a thermostat monster and I hated him at times for it. As an adult I now realize adjusting it even a couple degrees would have destroyed my parents extremely tight budget.”
Filling Up the Gas Tank
We all know that filling up the gas tank has gotten expensive, but knowing you don’t have to worry about having enough money to pay for that full tank is wonderful.
One commenter said, “Every time I stop to get gas I just let it run until it stops then pull the nozzle out and go on about my day. I never top up or make it an even amount.”
Another said, “Looking off into the distance while the pump fills my gas tank.”
Forgetting About Payday
Being able to forget exactly when payday is because you don’t have to worry about paying a bill as soon as it hits the bank is very freeing and should make you feel wealthy, even if you aren’t.
One person said, “I still remember the first time I forgot it was pay week. I was like ‘man, I finally made it!’ Especially once the bills were in auto-pay.”
Another said, “I had this experience with my company where I received a message saying they were sorry pay came in late this month due to issues with the bank. I was genuinely surprised payday came and went without me noticing.”
We all deserve to treat ourselves once in a while. Check on the prices of the VIP experience for something you enjoy in your area. You might be surprised that you can afford it.
One person said, “I pay $10 extra for VIP seats at the comedy club by my house (around 2-3 times a year). There’s no waiting in line, always seats in the front row. It’s $10!! I used to think they were at least $50 extra until I checked. Now I can be fancy and poor.”
A good quality mattress will save your back and ensure a restful night’s sleep. A new mattress is the height of feeling wealthy for some people.
One man said, “I just bought a new mattress for the first time in my life. Now I have no money till Friday but I feel rich laying in my luxurious new bed!”
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This thread inspired this post.
I’m Nicole Schmoll – a master’s-educated professional writer, mompreneur, and co-founder of Frugal Rules.
As a freelance copywriter in Omaha, I still believe that writing is an artistic expression. Every time I strike the keys, I intend to evoke a response from my listeners. I left my full-time career as a senior copywriter for an insurance agency to start my own freelance writing business.
I love watching and writing about TV (and how to stream it!)