The Art of Being Happily Poor

Today, many people are suffering just to make ends meet. Once, I was considered somewhat wealthy compared to most. Life experiences changed that.

Not many know this, but I was actually homeless for a while. I took a retirement job at a golf resort. This allowed me to sleep safely in my pickup, shower in the locker room, eat healthy and make wonderful friends. Homeless was only temporary, but I learned plenty about life and happiness. Each day at work for 9 years my goal was to make 100 people smile or laugh. I counted them daily.

For many years it has been a personal ambition to make others feel better about themselves and have a positive outlook when they walk away. It makes me happy.

After a long successful and busy career, I counted on my investigation and writing skills to earn more money. It became natural to just look around for every little thing I could be grateful for in my life. The main secret to happiness is to appreciate what we have. I became rich in my own way.

There are many ways to live a happy life. These are things that make me the happiest I have ever been:

🔹Stay creative.

🔹Help others.

🔹Do free or low cost activities. For us it means enjoying a walk, swim, bike ride, library, community center, attending classes, hiking, camping, gardening, and picnics. We don’t watch TV or spend hours on social media. It is similar to being a child again, full of wonderment and discovery.

🔹We made changes. Instead of spending every night in an expensive hotel, we take our tent and gear to ocassionally camp out overnight. It’s healthy and beautiful outdoors. We have no Internet at home. I don’t even know what internet and cable/satellite TV costs these days. We take our garbage to the local dump less than two miles away. We average $18 a month. Our nearest neighbor spends $45 to have someone pick their trash up.

It’s a simple and awesome existence. Less stress.

I learned that you can be happy when you don’t have the means and money you once had. In fact, some of the saddest people I know have plenty of money. They pay taxes on their homes and real estate. Their lives are complex. Ours is simple and cheap. We don’t spend and accumulate “things” much anymore. We survive and accumulate memories. We laugh and smile a lot.

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    • “We made changes. Instead of spending every night in an expensive hotel, we take our tent and gear to occasionally camp out overnight. It’s healthy and beautiful outdoors. We have no Internet at home. I don’t even know what internet and cable/satellite TV costs these days.”

      Internet implies that one has an Internet Provider that supplies a connection via Phone Wires (DSL), Cable, Fios (Fiber Optic), or Satellite (a little more complicated).

      But the same is supplied by Cellphone Service Providers. One can have connectivity to a Cellphone Server via their Phones, and one can use a HotSpot Feature to connect one’s Computer, Lap Top, and likely Tablets, to the Cellphone Service Provider.

      They likely have Cellphones, which these days are indispensable, and they connect other devices through them using provisions made possible by the Cellphone Service Provider.

      Hope this helps.

      Liked by 4 people

  1. Unhappiness comes from seeing what you could have had, vs what you have. Smart people learn to appreciate what they have. My father used to say that people don’t own things, that things own people. The more you have, the more you need to care for them and often the more complicated the care becomes.

    TV and computers have brought envy. Let it go folks, assess what you have and what you need, not what you want.

    Edeka 2015 Christmas Commercial

    The above, they were too busy to get together with their father when he was alive. He brings them together over his suggested loss or fictitious illness. Carl Jung said that when we are young, accomplishments mean much, but as we age, we begin to reflect on our lives. We can do that earlier, by keeping the things that are important, in mind, and appreciating what we have.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Last week, I emptied out a storage shed after they informed me the rent was going up to $90 a month. (It started out at $45, but that was 2007). In total I spent $1000s to hold boxes of THINGS I never missed. 3 large boxes were just awards, trophies, certificates accumulated. All trashed now. Young? They meant something. Today, just memories. It’s nice to save $90 a month starting now.

      Liked by 2 people

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