How Frugality Made Me Afford Happiness

Updated: July 29, 2023

I consider myself frugal.

While I do splurge on things occasionally, I only do it when I know I can afford it. And most of the time, I consciously avoid spending on unnecessary things.

There is a thin line between being frugal and being cheap (take the test here), and I choose to stay as close as possible to that line without crossing over.

Why? Because being as frugal as I can be has allowed me to “afford happiness.”


Here are some of the reasons why I say this…

Because I consciously avoid buying on impulse, I am able to save money and instantly buy the things I actually need when I need them – I recently had a flat tire that needed to be replaced. Instead of scrimping on cheap secondhand, I was able to immediately buy new ones.

Because I don’t spend on the unnecessary, I have more money to spend on the essentials and can afford the best quality (and often more expensive) brands – like the running shoes I bought with all the “tech features” that will help me avoid injuries and run better.

Because I have a frugal mindset, I don’t feel pressured to keep up with fads and trends, and I no longer feel envious when my friends have the latest gadgets – I’m simply happy for them and don’t feel stressed about “missing out.”

Because I like going to bargain stores, yard sales, and buying second-hand stuff online, I get to meet sellers who are mostly very interesting people – like a guy who plays the ukelele and a girl who reads tarot cards; how else can you meet these kinds of people given your current set of friends?

Because I’d rather fix broken stuff first myself before bringing them to the repair shop or buying a new one, I am able to learn useful skills – and this is the reason why I know how to fix a broken umbrella, which my friends find really awesome.

I could go on and on, but as you can see, being frugal has given me the opportunity to see life in a different way than most people can.

A life that’s simpler yet more challenging at the same time. A life that’s more rewarding because it’s focused only on the necessities – and there’s much less stuff that does nothing but give a false sense of happiness within us.


A friend was recently reassigned to a new department at work. Unfortunately, he didn’t like his new boss and how much company politics there was in his new branch.

Because he had enough savings and lived way below his means – he decided to quit his job and look for a new one where he could be happier and work more efficiently.

If you think about it, his frugality allowed him to afford to make that decision.

Being frugal is not just about saving money and spending less. It’s also about having the freedom to pursue what’s essentially important to us.

In the end, I can say that frugality is really about discovering that happiness is finding contentment in living a simple life.

What to do next: Click here to start your financial journey with IMG Wealth Academy
Photo credit: HKD


  1. Thank you for this article. It has reminded me of my philosophies and principles with regards to material things. It’s also not too early to teach this kind of mindset to children. If we can start them on having this kind of mentality the earlier, the better.

  2. a very heartwarming read! how very amusing to find out your skills in fixing umbrellas, you must be handy to have around :)

  3. You have wrote the article perfectly! It’s been a year since I have been following your blog. You have really nice articles. Eye-openers indeed. Totally inspiring! :-)

    Keep it up sir Fitz!

    Bap – from Davao

  4. I consider myself frugal-boarder line-cheap. While I buy mostly used, I don’t scrimped on nutritious food. I love veggies and salads and those are part of my diet. After all taking care of our body is a biggest investment.

  5. I can relate so much to this article! It’s true, happiness is contentment! Thanks for sharing your experiences and insights! God bless! :-)

  6. Being frugal is not just about saving money and spending less. It’s also about having the freedom to pursue what’s essentially important to us. – nailed it

  7. I totally agree sir Fitz! I have recently decided to take budgeting more seriously and have practiced a frugal lifestyle. I can relate with your list. Living frugally allowed me to enjoy life without the need to spend.

  8. Is it okay to have a loan with lower interest then I will deposit it to a higher interest rate. What is you comment? I think this is one form of savings or what you call money roll over. Thank you.

  9. i have 2 cars, im single, but i still consider myself frugal.. why? i dont buy brand new cars.. i like to tinker with old cars.. i try to fix them as far as i could before asking for the services of an expert mechanic.. i enjoy doing that.. so why 2 cars? so that in case the other car is getting fixed, i still have a car to use.. and if u combine the price of these 2 cars, including the cost for the repair, they’re still cheaper than buying brand new.. and the best thing is, they’re unique and quite rare.. i hate driving a car that looks very generic, such that u see one that looks exactly the same every minute you are on the road..

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