Written by Karen Bryan
While I’m the first to admit that there isn’t a sure-fire formula on how to enjoy life, I still believe that some principles can steer you in the right direction. Although this site focuses on saving money, it’s also about how to live the life you want, now and in the future.. Anyone can save money if they spend virtually nothing, work long hours, live in a tiny, cold house on a diet of bread and water. However, my aim is to illustrate that you can still enjoy life while keeping a rein on living expenses. So here are my tips on how to enjoy life, in random order.
Have a Life Plan
I believe it’s best to have some sort of route map for what you want to achieve in life. You’ll probably have to make some adaptations as you go along, or you may even have a total change of direction. In my early 40s I knew that I’d have to keep working for another 20+ years. I wanted to do something that would earn money in a field that was of interest to me, where I could work from home. That’s why I started Europe a la Carte, as I believed that being a self employed online travel publisher could fulfil these aims.
While it’s great to have material possessions, I don’t think that they are enough in themselves to make you happy. I had a wonderful time when our twin sons were young; although having sufficient money to give them a decent lifestyle was important too. I’ve had a lot of fun interacting with the online travel community while running my travel site. Sometimes it’s hard to find the time to nurture our relationships but they do take some effort and compromise.
Having a positive frame of mind and appreciating what you do have is an important part of enjoying life. It seems to be part of human nature to dwell on the negatives. Of course you can’t be continuously joyful, but you can focus more on the good things in your life more than the bad.
Most of the time we take good health for granted, but I know it’s harder to enjoy life if you are in pain or have health problems. We know most of the things that we should and shouldn’t be doing to be healthy, but can I resist that slice of cake?
Try to Achieve Balance
I’m not convinced that you can have it all; great job, plenty of money, happy family, busy social life with time and money for travel and leisure. Personally, I’m really glad that I worked part time when our sons were young in order to spend relaxed time with them. But that has left me not having a decent occupational pension, illustrating that living for today can be at odds with trying to plan for tomorrow
Be on Top of Your Finances
For me having our finances in sound order, i.e. working our essential spending and having enough money to cover our living expenses, gives me peace of mind. In my opinion, not knowing if you have enough money to pay the bills, watching the compound interest mount up on your credit card balance and incurring overdraft fees on your current account, can both detract from enjoying life now and store up financial problems for the future. Although it does take some time and self discipline, you need to master your money. Our money saving tips can help you get the best value possible from your spending.