Discovering Contentment & Peace of Mind | The New Luxury


Today’s challenging economic times (read: recession) have provided a lot of us with a much needed wake-up call in terms of living within our means.  I personally know people that have proactively downsized their homes, sold-off their boats, motorcycles, extra cars, etc., all in efforts to give themselves a cushion should financial hardship hit– if it hasn’t hit already.  Families are eating in more, packing school lunches for their kids, thrifting, and sharing hand-me-downs.  In dual-income homes, folks are making hard life adjustments (out of necessity in a lot of cases) should one of them lose their job.  

In short, we are re-learning (the hard way, in a lot of cases) the security and peace of mind that comes from frugality and just plain ol’ good sense.  We all (definitely myself included) would benefit from learning to appreciate what we have, and not be constantly looking over our shoulder at who’s pulling up at the stoplight in a faster, better whatever.  We have this sick need for immediate gratification, and are constantly allowing our homes, possessions and beliefs to be devalued by the influence of the media, advertising, peer pressure, etc,  We need to put our big-girl panties on and find our confidence in who we are, what we believe, and what we stand for– not in our stuff.  We can’t let our stuff define us, or we have no foundation or substance to our lives.  

“We were meant to live for so much more– have we lost ourselves?”  –Jon Foreman


Warren Buffet home

Warren Buffett, The world's second-richest man (net worth close to $40 billion) still resides in the 6,000-square-foot, five-bedroom gray stucco home he bought in 1958 for $31,500. The 78-year-old keeps fit on his very own handball court. In 2007 an intruder armed with a fake gun tried to break into the modest, ungated property, but was thwarted by security.


Warren Buffet has lived in the same home for over 50 years.  Yes, he does own a vacation home in Laguna Beach, California– but I think he’s earned it.  He could be living high on the hog, looking down on all of us, but he lives like a regular guy in a lot of ways and has simple tastes– he loves hamburgers and Cherry Coke.  That to me says the guy is pretty comfortable in his own skin.  Here is some of Warren Buffet’s tried & true reasoning and rules for investing, and in some cases life in general–

  • I like to go for cinches. I like to shoot fish in a barrel. But I like to do it after the water has run out.
  • If you’re an investor, you’re looking on what the asset is going to do, if you’re a speculator, you’re commonly focusing on what the price of the object is going to do, and that’s not our game.
  • It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.
  • It is only when the tide goes out, that you know who was swimming naked.
  • The fact that people will be full of greed, fear or folly is predictable. The sequence is not predictable.
  • I call investing the greatest business in the world because you never have to swing. You stand at the plate, the pitcher throws you General Motors at 47! U.S. Steel at 39! and nobody calls a strike on you. There’s no penalty except opportunity lost. All day you wait for the pitch you like; then when the fielders are asleep, you step up and hit it.
  • Rule No.1: Never lose money. Rule No.2: Never forget rule No.1.
  • Our favorite holding period is forever.
  • Risk comes from not knowing what you’re doing.
  • When asked how he became so successful in investing, Buffett answered: we read hundreds and hundreds of annual reports every year.
  • I never buy anything unless I can fill out on a piece of paper my reasons. I may be wrong, but I would know the answer to that. “I’m paying $32 billion today for the Coca Cola Company because…” If you can’t answer that question, you shouldn’t buy it. If you can answer that question, and you do it a few times, you’ll make a lot of money
  • Managers thinking about accounting issues should never forget one of Abraham Lincoln’s favorite riddles: `How many legs does a dog have if you call his tail a leg?’ The answer: `Four, because calling a tail a leg does not make it a leg’.
  • It’s far better to buy a wonderful company at a fair price than a fair company at a wonderful price.
  • Only buy something that you’d be perfectly happy to hold if the market shut down for 10 years.
  • Price is what you pay. Value is what you get.
  • I want to be able to explain my mistakes. This means I do only the things I completely understand
  • Wall Street is the only place that people ride to in a Rolls Royce to get advice from those who take the subway.

Warren Buffet quotes via

4 thoughts on “Discovering Contentment & Peace of Mind | The New Luxury

  1. if there was an all star team for investing, this guy would be the captain of the starting 5, he’s been as consistent as he’s been successful at what he’s doing

    i believe there’s a fairly new biography on him out now, i can’t recall the title. but another book i read on him had a fascinating take on his investment philosophy. imagine having a punchcard, and limit your stock picks with the number of “punchable” holes

    extreme restraint in other words

  2. We had a wake up call before the economy got real bad. We were living way beyond our means and some good friends gave us Dave Ramsey’s book, The Total Money Makeover. It changed our lives. Just as families, we as a nation need be responsible for ourselves and not expect the government to take care of us. Despite what seems like more than half of the country must seem to believe, President Obama isn’t going to pay off your car and house for you.

    • Ryan,

      You’re right. I have friends who have gone through just what you did, and they feel more empowered with their life, finances and family– and they are happier and more connected with one another. Stepping off the hamster wheel and having peace of mind and valuing what you have really feels like the new luxury.

      It’s a good example of knowledge+action+appreciation = power.



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