Living A Better Life Interview – Gary Super Saving Tips
In our brand new interview series, we are interviewing various individuals from across the web. This interview series focuses on how they are living a better life. They can be living a better life by pursuing financial independence, minimalism, simplicity, and many more aspects. Are you interested in being interviewed? Continue reading!
Want to be interviewed?
If you want to be interviewed about how you are living a better life. Contact us at [email protected] and tell us why you’d be a great candidate!
Give us your best elevator speech!
How are you living a better life than you were last year? 5 years ago? 10?
Of course as I have aged, life has changed for my wife and me. First, I am no longer dealing with the 9-5 routine that I dealt with for decades and that has allowed for me to pursue new and different ways to fill my daily routine. One of those was deciding to create my blog and newsletter and that has been a very rewarding and fulfilling experience as well as a challenge.
Secondly, retirement has made me even more conscious of being financially responsible since I know I have to make sure that our money must stretch further because of no longer getting a regular paycheck. Again, a challenge but also proof that if you do the right things all along, the mission as a retiree is easier than you might fear.
Every year, my money goals are centered on smarter spending and saving habits with less stress and strain about my money. I have less debt now (just the mortgage) and more disposable income than in the last years because of my efforts. Over the years since my retirement (2012), I have steadily built up an increase in my net worth despite not earning a regular paycheck. That can only be done with smart money management activities when making day to day decisions that everyone should be doing to help with their own financial matters.
What would you tell your younger self?
This is easy for me. I would tell my younger self to take much better care of their health.
Without your health, not much else really matters. Many older folks suffer from their own neglectful behaviors when young and do not realize how difficult that will make their financial burdens and life enjoyment suffer in their senior years. At the time of life when you have the most free time, you don’t want to spend it suffering and being treated for expensive medical conditions that you helped create or aggravate. This is even more devastating when you can’t afford the medical care you need.
What made you want to change the way you were living?
Does financial independence play a role? If so, how?
I never was a FIRE devotee. That was likely because I didn’t see it as being possible for me but more likely because I enjoyed many of the aspects of my work career helping others. I have even made decisions to change employers at times to have the ability to enjoy my work and still have time to spend with my family, even when it reduced my income.
My goal was to minimize my debts and their pressures by spending wisely, being more successful, and earning more money so that I would be able to support my family and have the time to spend with them.
What advice do you have for others in living a better life?
Try to remember that money itself is only a means to an end. We shouldn’t measure the quality of anyone by how much they earn or they have, but their financial success is better measured in how it helps others have greater quality in their lives. That can be by using money in supporting your family, friends, and even strangers. After we fulfill our own basic needs, we should think of all kinds of ways our money can help as many others as it can possibly help.
What books/podcasts/blogs have you consumed that lead you to this point?
A few of the books that really resonated with me are: The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko, Your Money or Your Life by Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin, and I Will Teach You To Be Rich by Ramit Sethi.
What’s one area in your life you still struggle with?
One of the areas I have real difficulty with is to know when to stop providing too much financial help to my adult child who struggles with her own personal finance matters. As a parent, the urge to protect your child is in a constant battle with educating and teaching a child to be more responsible and make better decisions (by learning from you, others, and making their own mistakes). While there is great value in sometimes learning the hard way, I know that when I see my own child suffer I have far too many times offered a band-aid and not done any favors by doing so in what could have been a teachable moment.
If you had to give just 1 tip that you’ve learned along your journey, what would it be and why?
Where can readers get in touch with you?
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