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“You know what? You are the cheapest friend I have.”
“ What?! Why?” I frowned and slapped her shoulder lightly.
“Because whenever we meet, you don't like eating in a restaurant or a fast food. You always want us to eat street foods. Hello! I told you I'll pay for the foods.”
“Oh yes! I agree that I'm your cheapest friend! And I'm proud of that. Next time we'll eat at that restaurant if that's what will make you happy”, I sheepishly smiled at her.
This was the conversation I had with my BFF yesterday. She became my friend back in high school, and we've been friends for more than 12 years now. We rarely talk and see each other because of the conflicts in our schedules, but when we talk or meet, we usually pick up from where we left. I think it's somehow a one of a kind friendship, we can get along well, and we can bond without being too clingy with each other.
Going back to what happened, she called me cheap because when we see each other, I usually ask for us to eat some street foods which are really cheap — you can buy a lot with a mere $1. It's not just her who calls me cheap. My family would sometimes say I'm cheap and too strict when it comes to spending my money. Well, there's a deep reason why I became like this. I'm actually not being cheap, I'm just being thrifty. I always think about being practical instead of being a spendthrift.
I always want to be thrifty and live economically. Nowadays, being thrifty is no longer highly regarded like it was before. I remember, when I was a lid, my grannies would always tell us stories how thrifty our great-grandparents were, one even died with lots of money kept in a wooden box so his family didn't worry about his burial.
When I was a student, my mom would give me money just enough for my fare and snacks she doesn't give me extra although she can. So I learned to be thrift and not spend all my money for snacks. I say that I have no money, but I always have an emergency fund kept in secrecy.
Nowadays, instead of being thrifty, people are encouraged to spend here and there. Advertisements and media plays an important role on this, so if we are not careful, we could be swayed by that and waste our money on unimportant things.
Being thrifty is good but when a person is already mean, stingy, miserly and close-fisted because of being thrifty, then it's no longer a good thing. We should learn to be thrifty in a wise way.
Money could protect us. In Ecclesiastes 7:12, the bible says that “money is protection.” It doesn't mean that money could give us a measure of security and protection. But when there is an emergency such as accident or sickness, it could help us. So it is on right to be thrifty and always save whenever we have the chance to do so.
Getting more for our money. When we save our money and buy, our money earns interest until we could spend it. For example, I store money on my online wallet, but I don't get it from money remittance centers when I need it. I made a loading business where people pay me to top up their load and data. That way, I eliminate paying for cash outs on money remittance centers, and I gain interest instead.
We learn the value of resourcefulness. When you try to be thrifty, you can differentiate what's a need and what's a want. If something is really needed, but you are trying to be more economical, you can look for alternatives. Perhaps buy second hand items or if possible, just borrow from someone. I used to spend a lot of money for expensive clothes just to be more fashionable, but when a friend taught me how to buy on thrift shops, I became more frugal but fashionable at the same time.
I want to look decent when I go out, but I also give so much thought to save money when it comes to clothes. I watched some Korean Dramas and really liked how the characters dressed with a dignified look, so I tried to look for similar styles on nearby thrift shops and somehow found these clothes. I spent a mere $1.20 on this, but they say that it doesn't look cheap at all.
You can pursue your passion. Some think that when you are thrifty, you won't be able to make fun and enjoy. But this is a big NO. When you try to be more frugal you can be free from more spending and debt. Less debt, means more freedom. And since you want to save more, you can be as innovative as you can.
I remember one time, I was craving for a fried chicken from a famous fast food restaurant, but my conscience is killing me for going there alone, so I watched tutorial vlogs how to achieve the same taste as that specific fast food's fried chicken. So I was able to save more and I was also able to do my passion in cooking.
We had some leftover from the fried chicken I cooked so I tried to recycle it and was able to come up with this.
Most of the family's budget is usually spent on foods. So being thrifty also means being careful when we are buying our foods, in the preparation and what we do with leftovers. Most of the time, we just throw away the left overs, but if we can just be innovative and resourceful, we can save it and make something new out of it. That way we can save money from buying again.
You can pursue a healthier life. I want to be more physically fit, but I'm too lazy to exercise most of the time, but I learned from a magazine I've read before that brisk walking is also a form of exercise, so I usually just walk going to a certain place instead of riding a vehicle. That way I hit two birds with one stone — I can save money for fare and I could exercise at the same time.
These are just few of the reasons why I practice being thrifty. I can say that being frugal can also bring a certain degree of pleasure and satisfaction. So being called cheap doesn't matter at all. @esciisc 💕