Keeping Away From the Joneses

(+ Surviving Financial FOMO)

Keeping up with the Joneses - spending money to match the perceived wealth of your peers - is a common but dangerous habit. So why do we do it?

Cultural messaging teaches us to associate wealth, success, and even self-worth with material possessions from an early age.

In adulthood, we chase expensive homes, cars, clothing, and gadgets to soothe the fear of falling "behind" our friends, relatives, and neighbors.

Unfortunately, this is a pursuit that never ends.  The Joneses are not real people you can catch, they are an insecurity we project onto other people. Chasing that fear only reinforces it.

Continuing to pursue the Joneses will steadily drain your money, energy, and happiness over time, all without ever alleviating the financial FOMO.

But very few of us ever intentionally "choose" to keep up with the Joneses. It's more of a subconscious habit, so what can we do about it?

Unfortunately, there's no one-and-done cure to financial FOMO. Instead, we can gradually practice noticing and overcoming negative money influences.

If you want to feel more at peace with your money and belongings and give up constantly chasing the unreachable Joneses, here are a few strategies to try.

The Abundance Mindset

Focusing on what you have and love, instead of what you don't, teaches your brain to feel more satisfied and calm, instead of constantly chasing the next thing.

Know Your Joneses

Some people tend to give us more financial FOMO and insecurity than others. Know who yours are, and set your expectations accordingly.

Spot Jonesy Jargon

Watch out for common money peer-pressure phrases like "it's worth it," "you should get one too," or "it only costs $..."

Replace Envy With Kindness

When someone tells you about a big purchase of theirs, focus on excitement for them, rather than envy. This will benefit you both.

Try Not to Be the Joneses

Everyone is the envy of someone else at some point. Try to enjoy your possessions without flaunting them and spreading financial FOMO.

Swipe up for more thoughts and strategies on financial peace and security!