Captain Obvious here speaking! I think it hasn’t been properly realized and internalized that money is not the end, but rather the means to an end such as happiness, health, and satisfaction. If money and stuff turns into an end, all you have become is a materialist. Not the good kind of materialist either, that is, a person who understands the value of good materials, but the bad kind of materialist, who only understand the relative amount and who can never be satisfied with having enough. Bad materialists will always seek to increase their nest egg and amount of material possessions in the attempt to feel better about themselves.

Furthermore, it must be realized that money only comprises part of the means. Anyone who think of money as the only means to an end is simply a consumer fully at the mercy of both his money and those who try to take the money away from him. A consumer will always be fearful that he does not have enough money because without money he will be helpless to do anything. A consumer will always be afraid that he is not making enough money or that his budget will be too small.

These two motivations stem from a fallacy in thinking about price and value and means and ends, but I think we all carry some of both in us to a smaller or greater extent. I think I got a pretty good handle on realizing that money is only part of the means to an end, so I actually take some pride in spending as little as I do to the point where I would consider spending a lot of money on a lifestyle to be a failure of other means. However, I still struggle with the status anxiety of not being a millionaire like all the other retirees seem to be, so for some reason I am unhappy about having less than some others even though I have enough.

Daily Yakezie Short Carnival: Non-US Investment Principles Different From Common Investment Advice @ Canadian Finance Blog, Earning a Living or Living an Earning @ Eliminate The Muda!, Emergency Fund – Your Take? @ Out of Debt Again, & Do You & Your Spouse Argue Over Finances? @ Ending The Rat Race