why is it that i'm not satisfied?

i was talking to an investing/developer girlfriend at length on the phone the other day (for several hours as we do) and one topic came up that has been puzzling me since i began this investing journey.

why is it that some people are happy and content to live in the same house, in the same industrial suburb, with the same kitchen and carpet, for 50 years ... while we (g/frnd and i) are striving to have better and better all the time? not more - just better.

it's not a keep up with the jones' as neither of us care what the jones' have. it's more a case of "we want it all for ourselves". the nice house in the nice inner ring suburb, the nice water views, the pool, the nice (but not expensive) car, the travel (which we can't afford yet due to investing) etc etc ... whereas so many others are happy to have their 1950's cottage, 20yr old car, travel to the pub each friday and don't strive for more.

life would be a hell of a lot easier if we didn't desire - on our income we would then have a lovely mortgage free house in some ordinary suburb on the fringes of town, trip to bali every year etc etc ... why this passion to invest and what drives it?
 
I can't answer your question but I can tell you I'm in the same boat. Enough of the big dream home? Hardly. I strive to afford the dream home and every type of maintenance staff under the sun.

Over the last few years my wife and I have gradually upgraded where we live... renting a 1-br unit, owning and living in a small old timber house, to owning and living in a large renovated brick and tile. When my sister and my brother in law came to visit, BIL said something like "So, is this where you'll be living from now on?" That just didn't make sense to me and I didn't know how to answer him. Maybe we'll settle one day, but not in this!
 
This will be a fascinating thread and will be interested to see what other people's thoughts are on this.

I can also relate to this feeling. I am not sure how to describe it. I have always felt it, even when I was young and at school. There was always a drive, to do something or achieve more than just the norm. Not that I knew what the 'norm' was then. And today, I am not really that concerned about what makes the 'norm'. Is it restlessness, I don't know. It seems innate, almost instinctive, that there is a possibility of something great that is just out of reach today, but with focus, application and knowledge will be achievable tomorrow or the day after.

Its been an evolution though in my PI path. Each minor achievement has built on this fervour to be able to do more, from the first simple buy and hold purchase, to the first renovation, to the first development and so on. A positive feedback loop ;)

Eight years ago when I started on this PI journey, if I had outlined in 2009 you will have achieved this, I would have said, you have made it. I believe now, that its not even half time yet. Maybe I'll know I have made it, when I get there.

On the flip side, some of this drive can be tiring and the choices you make (and I know for me) have had some consequences in my private life. Balance is the key - easy to say, has been a little harder in practice for me.

However, I do want the luxuries that most people are looking for, but to also have a financial legacy for my future family. My parents, similar to many immigrants to this country, built a family, life and careers from literally nothing. So for me, having the opportunities that this country provides, to not build on what has already been achieved and pass on the benefits (financial and otherwise) is well, it just not going to happen. Non-negotiable :)
 
I'm the complete opposite.

I firmly believe that if nothing is ever enough for you, if you can't find satisfaction at some point, you can't ever be happy. Happiness is completely tied to your ability to be satisfied by something.

We have a modestly comfortable home. We can afford to eat out if we don't feel like cooking. We can afford a cleaner to do the hard work once a fortnight. We can put as much wood on the fire as we like without worrying about whether we can afford it. We can go to the doctor or the dentist or the vet when we need to and not worry about whether we can afford it. I'd like a second bathroom and a few minor updates to the house, but generally speaking? That's good enough for me. I think I have a fantastic life.

My only motive for investing? To be able to maintain that standard of living without going off to work every day to keep it. Because my life is so fantastic that I would really like to live it all the time instead of just evenings and weekends.
 
Warren Buffet built a multi billion dollar investment empire and yet still lives in the house he bought for $30,000 something like 30 years ago.

Some people must just like the place where they live, no matter what other factors drive them to succeed.
 
Different priorities.

I know a couple who are about 70 with a couple of mill in shares, holiday house and a few rental properties they inherited from their parents. They are living in the same house after about 45 years, and the house, orange carpet sqaures, furniture, etc (and holiday house) are all original. I find the scenery unpleasant, but I guess they like it. They don't like to waste anything.

I want to be comfortable, but I don't feel I need the best of anything. My priority is to spend quality time with my kids and husband. My kids are young so I've got crappy furniture, which I'm ok with, as I'd rather go fishing, holidays, etc with them right now.

IMO There's no point having wonderful water views, stunning house if you have no time to relax and enjoy it because you're too busy paying it off.
 
Good thread.

My best friends parents have lived in the same house for 40years. Same kitchen & brown/ green bathroom. I never understood this as money didn't seem to be an issue.

They raised 2 kids and never went without. They ALWAYS appear however to be VERY happy.

As I grow older and wiser I am starting to understand that they probably grasped the idea of not falling to consumerism. :eek:

Life is about the enjoying the simple things. Marketeers have convinced us that we need to actually pay for a product or service.
 
what drive it?

being able to hand down wealth to your children.

chris rock said it perfectly.

"i'm talking about wealth! the sh*t you hand down from generation to generation. i don't mean no fancy cars, and bling wheels and ho's all 'round - i'm talking wealth. Shaq is RICH, he got the fame and the bling and the respect. the man who signs his paycheck is WEALTHY."
 
but that's just it ... i drive a 12 yr old car, and would like to buy something newer but only because i want something smaller and might as well get a newer second hand one at the same time (go down from a corolla to an echo).

i have a 9yr old lounge suite which is very comfortable, looks nice and i don't want a new one - but i will want a 2nd one soon for the family room. i have a lcd tv, but is still about 4-5 years old and not interested in a new one.

i do like to live centrally in a good neighbourhood - on a block, not appartment - but that is still only in newcastle. i do like a pool for the kids in summer and i do like having a view of "something" - but as long as the house is tidy, easy to clean and modern-ish inside then i'm happy.

but then again - i do like my ensuite, my stone benchtops, not having to go to work (been laying bricks this morning!) and ability to buy what i want when i want it. i do want to travel but not on a shoestring - been there done that and is not much fun.

i think what it boils down to is wanting the time freedom, with both hubby and i been thru bad divorces a while back and having to start from scratch and with getting older ... okay ... no so old. if i live as long as my "still going" grandmother i'm not even halfway there - but my dad did die in an accident at not much older than hubby is now.

recently i've also been struggling with "i want to DO something, but not sure what IT is." basically i want to leave a footprint, but i haven't the patience for politics, the empathy for charity work or the desire to spend 4 years at uni learning a new trade (and starting from the bottom).

but it still doesn't explain this restlessness.

when did life get so complicated?
 
recently i've also been struggling with "i want to DO something, but not sure what IT is."
I've had the same feeling..... My something is create a new business that occupies my mind, buy a commercial property to put it in, then sell the business & lease property.... and retire until I get the urge to do it all again.

Finding the IT has been the issue till recently.
 
Good thread.

My best friends parents have lived in the same house for 40years. Same kitchen & brown/ green bathroom. I never understood this as money didn't seem to be an issue.

They raised 2 kids and never went without. They ALWAYS appear however to be VERY happy.

As I grow older and wiser I am starting to understand that they probably grasped the idea of not falling to consumerism. :eek:

Life is about the enjoying the simple things. Marketeers have convinced us that we need to actually pay for a product or service.

At 32 I'm starting to work that out, while its nice to live by the beach and drive a luxury euro car........ there are much more rewarding things in life. My boss would be classed as a Oz billionaire if he sold the company, You wouldn't pick it at all. He's even procrastinated for 15 years about getting his dream 911 car as he's worried what the workers would think?
 
I firmly believe that if nothing is ever enough for you, if you can't find satisfaction at some point, you can't ever be happy. Happiness is completely tied to your ability to be satisfied by something.

I'm happy. The journey and the constant upgrading is immensely satisfying. Why stop?
 
recently i've also been struggling with "i want to DO something, but not sure what IT is." basically i want to leave a footprint, but i haven't the patience for politics, the empathy for charity work or the desire to spend 4 years at uni learning a new trade (and starting from the bottom).

but it still doesn't explain this restlessness.

when did life get so complicated?

Lizzie,
You don't happen to be about 40 years old?
I reassessed my life then. Decided I wasn't happy, and got divorced.

At work we were talking about this one day. I told the younger guys to watch out when their partner turn 40.
 
but it still doesn't explain this restlessness.
when did life get so complicated?

lizzie, may I suggest you pick up a book called The Dream Giver by Bruce Wilkinson?
It explains the story of a person with the same internal gnawing that you are describing and how it worked out in a life journey.
 
...not more - just better.... the nice house in the nice inner ring suburb, the nice water views, the pool, the nice (but not expensive) car, the travel (which we can't afford yet due to investing) etc etc ... life would be a hell of a lot easier if we didn't desire - on our income we would then have a lovely mortgage free house in some ordinary suburb on the fringes of town, trip to bali every year etc etc ...

You desire it because you don't have it, and somehow feel you are missing out.

I also find you need to be really, really honest with yourself about the bit on the Joneses.

Living in a western capitalist society you are constantly pounded with subliminal (and not so subliminal) messages about what you are supposed to have - and it is difficult for anyone to avoid it without becoming a secluded hermit in the hills.

Have a real hard think about what it is you want, and why you want it.
Is it for functional effciency (i.e. makes life easier for you), health reason, aesthetically pleasing, or really at the end of the day - to show off to someone?

That's not to say you shouldn't get what you want - but I suspect somewhere along the way, you'll hit a time when it dawns on you that securing what you need is very different from getting what you want.

I got to that big dream home stage - and even got cleaners and gardeners to come in. In the end, they weren't what we needed (we thought they were). If it were, we would have been better off living in a serviced apartment or hotel (only 2 of us, and you can only sleep in one bed at a time....).

Don't get me wrong however - what (for now you think) you need could be a heck of a lot bigger than what you want...

For example, what we think we need now is ability to grow food for ourselves :D So I still need a big yard - actually now I need a bigger yard so I can keep chooks etc without the neighbours throwing a hissy....

I posted a photo of our backyard, in this link
http://www.somersoft.com/forums/showthread.php?t=56754&page=3
because I knew the responses I would get from the "nice house in the nice inner ring suburb" mindset.

What people don't see is that in that picture, is that inside that "mess" are:
- 25 types of vegetables
- 14 types of fruit
- 5 types of herbs

To top that off, our combined water usage for our household (2 persons) is around 165 litres per day (Melbourne Water target is 155 Litres per person per day) - and we haven't even got a rain water tank yet...

However, to many, I suspect it would be far from what they would "want". And all the Jones's in them would tell me "Y-man, you need it cleaned up big time!"

But it took getting what I wanted, before I could have clarity of vision to see what I needed.

It is also important too that we keep in mind want one person needs is very different to another's (one person's dream is another person's nightmare!).

I talked to a friend of mine some time ago - I asked him what his dream life would be if he ever won lotto and had more than enough money to retire on. He said he'd spend the whole year travelling to places, spending the days reading novels next to the pool in the sun.... I was thinking man, that'd have to be the most boring thing I could imagine...!


Yes, life would be simpler if we didn't desire - but sometimes you can't figure out what you need without having what you want first.

You may think you want a holiday in Bali every year.
You may in fact need a trip to Bali (or wherever) for health reasons (destress etc).
You may even need a home over there! Who knows.... :)


Cheers,

The Y-man
 
That's the basis isn't it. Doing what makes you happy and satisfies you.

I got into this on an intellectual decision - it's pretty obvious, at least for the short term, that property will perform reasonably well, and provide an income that isn't dependent on the government, financial markets et all rationing out my savings and superannuation. That said, emotionally I'm a bit too pessimistic to go with this circumstance for too long - all the ups and downs of international economics, foreign buyers, interest rates, etc - are wearing for a newbie like me. (following the hold or sell thread keenly!)

I've lived in the same place for about 15 years, same carpet etc. Now cleaning it up for rent or sale, with the motivation of exiting the 9 to 5 workforce asap. My heart is probably closer to bullion investing than property investment but that's probably because I'm a happier saver than speculator.

As for consuming and the Joneses - been there done that. It's all quite empty in the end.
 
I thought I wanted a pair of genuine Ugg boots.I bought them last year while on vacation in Australia. Haven't worn them even once. Selling them to my daughter's friend (at a profit of course :) )
 
recently i've also been struggling with "i want to DO something, but not sure what IT is." basically i want to leave a footprint, but i haven't the patience for politics, the empathy for charity work or the desire to spend 4 years at uni learning a new trade (and starting from the bottom).

but it still doesn't explain this restlessness.

when did life get so complicated?

I'm reading this book at the moment, "I could do anything, if only I knew what it was". by Barbara Sher

It's quite good so far.
 
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