You can’t afford not to care

Of course you don’t care about money because you’re an easy going maverick, a laid back entertainer and a free spirit who wants to enjoy the moment.  Money is for spending after all, right?  

Worrying about money is a hassle and a bit naff.  I get that.  I used to be like that.  Why on earth would you watch your spending or think about retirement if you make more than enough to get by? (subtext = get off my back and let me live my life.)

Sorry – I can’t get off your back.  I’m on a mission to help you retire early, remember?

Let’s look at it this way.

You can’t afford not to care about money, until you can afford not to care about money.

Money is extremely important – to a point.  Then it becomes unimportant.

Let me draw it for you this way:


Apologies if I seem to be making a simplistic argument, but I think that’s where a huge amount of confusion lies.  Of course money is not actually important.  It’s an inert and largely theoretical unit of exchange.  Why would you want to act like some people who become prize morons in the pursuit of money. On the other hand, money is extremely important because it allows us to a) live and b) to exercise our freedom by being able to make choices that aren’t influenced by money.

For better or worse, we don’t live in a culture where bartering is the main form of economic exchange.  Yes the best things in life are free, but you still can’t pay for groceries with sea shells or a smile.  

If you need to work any number of hours in a week in order to pay bills, then you can’t afford not to care about money.

If you plan on being alive for the next 5 years, or even the next 5 weeks, then you can’t afford not to care about money.

Unless your lifestyle is entirely self sufficient, or paid for with passive income, then you can’t afford not to care about money.

If your job is taking you or your partner away from your children (or other people you love) for a significant part of the week, then you can’t afford not to care about money.

If you have any sort of consumer debt, or a mortgage you haven’t paid off yet, then you can’t afford not to care about money.

If your job leaves you weary, cranky and stressed out, then you can’t afford not to care about money.

If you are putting meaningful ambitions, niche hobbies, personal projects, travel, learning, or any other dreams ‘on the backburner for now’ then you can’t afford not to care about money.


Here’s a suggestion….

Care about money until you have enough of it to last you for the rest of your life.  Then you can truly say ‘I don’t care about money’.




8 thoughts on “You can’t afford not to care

  1. Kathy

    I think money will always be important to me. Even though I’m already retired and have enough invested so that the dividends and interest income we receive is equal to and surpassing our pension, we will always be watchful over it. There are many things that we can afford to spend our money on but we choose not to simply because losing that sum from our investments impacts the amount of return we receive. Our choices are always made very thoughtfully, weighing the benefits of the purchase vs. the benefits of keeping the money invested. I’m trying to be a good steward of the money while not giving it ultimate power over our decisions.

    1. Post author

      Agree money will always be a factor in our lives, and decisions will always need to be made – but I bet it doesn’t play on your mind in the same way it might have done before you were retired? at least I hope it doesn’t :-)

  2. Lance @ HWI

    Eventually everyone is held accountable for their decisions or indecision’s in life. Being too casual with your relationship with money can set you behind for decades and could make you work until you die….but hey why worry about that?

  3. Free Money Minute

    Money is important in that it enables you to do a lot of the things in your life that you desire. It is also, in a lot a ways, a representation of the efforts you have put in providing a product or service for someone else. You then can take your money “credits” and request a product or service you need or want from someone else.

  4. Emma Lincoln

    Great point! I always laugh when I meet people who “don’t care” about money but yet are so stressed and worried about finding / keeping a job, like it’s two different things.

  5. Pingback: You Can't Afford Not to Care - Rockstar Finance

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