We are what many would consider ‘high income earners’, earning $255,000 a year ‒ and yet we are completely out of control. Our five years of DINK (Double Income No Kids) lifestyle came to a halt when we had three kids in two years, and we are now floundering month to month. I am struggling to change my shopping habits (expensive everything), and we have a large dream house that we started building before our unplanned children arrived. What can we do?
I was reading a magazine profile the other day on Johnny Depp.
Instead of buying his smokes himself, he has his assistant do it ‒ and gets them to scribble out the health warnings and horrific pictures of blackened lungs with a biro, so he doesn’t have to think about the health consequences. So far it’s working out well for him.
If you’re on a high enough income, you can apply Johnny’s smoke experiment to your money. You’d be surprised how many couples I meet who are in your situation and do just that. As long as the money keeps flowing, you’ll be able to smoke through your prime earning years.
However, it will catch up with you eventually. It always does. The damage you’re doing to your finances isn’t hit or miss. The black shadows, the worries that wake you up in the middle of the night ‒ and cause you to tap out a confessional email to me ‒ won’t go away. Eventually they’ll consume you.
My inbox is full of people who are 20 years down the road you’re on. They’re in their fifties and have suddenly been richoched into reality by a divorce, disease or retrenchment. They’re left bitter and twisted, and scared that they now can’t live any other way.
So right now you’ve got a choice. It’s not too late. What you’re doing isn’t working. You’ve admitted that yourself. For the sake of your family — and to be good role models for your kids — it’s time to start doing something that will work.
This week I want you to have your first Date Night and set up your buckets. Then, start moving through the Barefoot steps together. They’ll work for you, just as they’ve worked for thousands of couples (and many on far less income than you). The steps work every single time. Not because there’s any magic, but because they’re based on good old fashioned common sense.
Email me next week after your Date Night, and let me know how you go …