7 Reasons I Hate the Joneses
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Whether we like to admit it or not, we have all at one time or another attempted to keep up with the Joneses. It could be as complex as buying a house in a certain fancy neighborhood or as simple as eating out at a gourmet restaurant when you can’t afford it, just so you can hang out with your friends. It’s peer pressure at its finest, but it really all comes from pressuring ourselves with the need to fit in, which is the same pressure we’ve felt since we were teenagers.
Instead, quit comparing yourself to others and ask yourself why you want the things you think you want. Why do you really want a brand new car? Why do you want that Michael Kors purse or those Frye boots? (I’m guilty on both charges.) We want them because we see that other people have them, and we lust after them until we get them.
The next time you start to feel this pressure (and it may take some practice before you can recognize it coming), remind yourself why you’re not going to be that person. (Because we’re all better than that!)
Here are 7 reasons I hate the Joneses
1. They drive around like a boss (probably to go to the mall) in their leased, luxury vehicles. The neighbor bought a new car, so now we want a new car. Wouldn’t we feel so much better if we had heated seats and a sunroof, too??
2. They don’t actually own what they have. Their designer clothing is financed on maxed out credit cards, their cars belong to the dealership that leased them, and their houses are over-mortgaged, leaving them underwater. The riches they have are financed by a payment mentality. Doesn’t sound very appealing after all, does it?
3. When they get a hefty tax refund, rather than paying down some debt or saving it, they start planning their next overseas vacation or decide it’s time to upgrade that 2 year-old car. You know it’s time to go to the dealership to trade it in when that new car smell is gone and you’re out of windshield-washer fluid.
4. They have no clue what “IRA” stands for. Retirement savings, what’s that? Online brokerage account? Don’t know, don’t care. Why bother to save for tomorrow when you can spend it all now, am I right?
5. ‘Shop til you drop’ is their favorite motto. It’s the weekend. It’s beautiful and sunny out. Let’s go
on a picnic. Hiking. To a park. Shopping! After all, what’s a Saturday without shopping?
6. They frequent hair and nail salons, jewelry stores, and tanning studios. We all want to look our best. That’s why it’s important to look as
fake good as possible with overly-dyed hair, whitened teeth, gel nails and spray tans.
7. We continually feel the urge to follow in their footsteps. Sometimes it’s hard to determine why we do it, but we have all fallen into the trap of chasing after the Joneses more than we’d care to admit. I’ve done it and you’ve done it, and there will be times when even the best of us will succumb to its temptations.
Why do we chase these people? Rather than trying to keep up with these people, we should feel sorry for them. Don’t let them fool you into thinking they have it all (they don’t). They’re not as rich as we think they are.
Rather than focusing so much on conspicuous consumption, we should be living our own lives the way we really want to live them – and leave our hard earned money in our bank account. We should stop trying so hard to be people we aren’t, and just be the people we’re supposed to be.
People who don’t care how old our cars are (as long as they’re paid for), people who don’t care what labels are hanging in our closets, and people who don’t measure our self-worth by the amount of things stuffed in our houses.
I hope the new year is full of good things for you (and I’m not talking about the things you can buy in a store.) 😉 Happy 2016!
What was your last keeping up with the Joneses moment? Do you ever catch yourself drooling over things your neighbors have? What’s one area of life you’re tempted to keep up with the Joneses on?