There’s not much good that comes out of being homeless. Whether one loses it all as a result of addiction, mental illness or just plain ol’ bad luck, life on the streets teaches hard lessons. Some of those lessons are definitely positive ones however. Now, setting aside the unfortunate people who are on the streets due to drug or mental conditions, here are 5 things we can learn about finances from homeless people.
You might be surprised to know that there are a lot of homeless people who are quite content with their lot in life. They are happy to be out of the rat race and free of the trappings and the cost of those trappings that the rest of us have in our lives. Not only that, many homeless people remain upbeat and positive despite what life has thrown their way as far as the breaks go. Money doesn’t necessarily dictate a happy life.
2. Every Penny Counts
If you think you know how to stretch a dollar, think again. Homeless people know the value of a dollar in a way few of us can understand. And they know how to make it last. Heck, the same can be said for every quarter, dime, nickel or penny that comes their way. You won’t see a homeless person buying a $5 coffee and we could learn a thing or two about spending wisely from them.
We’re conditioned from a pretty early age to work 9 to 5, get that pay check, and then buy what we want. Hey, it works but homeless people don’t have this luxury and they know where every soup kitchen is, when every bakery disposes of their “day-olds” and the insides of every Good Will or Salvation Army store. Many of them get by very well without having to sit in an office all day. They feed and clothe themselves on their own initiative and savvy. We should all try to cultivate this kind of resourcefulness. It helps to out from where we can get superior value against the same amount of money.
4. Leading by Example
Being homeless is no picnic for those unfortunate enough to find themselves on the street, and that should never be forgotten. However seeing them every day can help us to be thankful for what we have and truly appreciate the roof over our heads. There are a thousand daily comforts we take for granted that homeless people never get to enjoy. We have these small luxuries and we mustn’t lose sight of that. Also, we should truly enjoy what we have because, in the end, we’re no different than anyone else, and tragedy could befall us as well. So, what are you grateful for today?
5. Perseverance Pays Off
A homeless person will stand at a corner all day begging for change or look for any kind of work. True, this is born of necessity but they tough it out for as long as it takes, every day, to get enough money to eat and maybe a bed for the night. They don’t get sick days or vacations and many of them refuse welfare handouts, choosing instead to work for every penny they get. No matter what our economic status, we should all be willing to do the same.
This article was written by Andrew Salmon. He writes for LifeCover.ca – a website with information about term life insurance.