We need to start looking down

The key to most marketing is to make you feel that you are not acceptable the way you are, or that you just happen to need these additional items, and it has led to people spending far too much time looking upwards, being aspirational, which isn’t very helpful for your own happiness, or your bank balance.

There will always be someone better looking, smarter, richer, stronger or fitter than you and if you look up with envy you will never be content with yourself.

If you take the time to look down, you may feel a lot more content with your situation.

An average worker in the UK earns a salary of £24,804 each year. If you look up of course you will see people who take home mega six figure bonuses, drive Ferraris or even own entire islands, yet if you change your focus and look downwards when assessing the level of income you earn, you will realise just how well off you actually are. These stats will certainly put your average income into perspective.

  • The average global wage is around £10,719 per year and therefore the UK average is double that of the world.
  • 80% of the world’s people live on only $10 per day! That’s £2,203 each year! This saddening fact instantly makes you wealthier than 5.6 billion people. 
  • Nearly a billion people entered the 21st century unable to read a book or sign their names. 
  • Closer to home, over 2 million people in the UK are unemployed.
  • As an average person living in a high income country, you can expect to live 16 years longer than the average person living in a low income country. That’s 16 more years of earnings and more importantly time to enjoy with your family and friends. 

I hope these statistics will help you to realize just how well off you are and to feel content with your situation. It is always good to strive for more but do you really need to spend money you do not have on some new ‘must have’ item just because some celebrity has been paid a small fortune to advertise it?

When you next think about flashing the plastic, perhaps think about the people less fortunate than you and it may make you think twice.

You could perhaps take it further and instead put your energy and money into helping the people not as well off as you, it will even result in a better pay off than the new ‘must have’ item.

Studies have shown that people who help others experience a ‘helpers high’ and become happier people, whilst separate studies have shown that the high experienced from buying new things wears off as soon as you have popped the tags, so perhaps you don’t actually need to spend as much money, especially when you don’t even have it to begin with.

I always feel you should strive to improve your skills, life and income, however it may help every now and then to sit back and consider how well off you already are and to be content for what you have.

Get in touch today for a personal, independent, and comprehensive financial plan.

Mark Underdown | DipPFS IMC CeMap

Financial Planning Consultant


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