One thing I’ve learned over my time is that there is SO much more to personal finance than simply saying “cut your spending/invest/save money”.

Before savings, Jay and I live off less than $45,000 per year. That’s $10.81 per hour, per person. We work to minimize our expenses, but at a certain point… you hit bottom where you simply can’t cut anything else out. And, that’s okay.

Why? Because what works for one person may not work for another. Yours and my realities may be ENTIRELY different.

We are all told not to measure our success to the neighbors (“keeping up with the Jones”), but are we challenging ourselves not to measure other people’s success to ourselves?

I am financially fortunate. I figured out the importance of owning a home and becoming being debt free at a young age. I’ve got gainful employment, a dual income household, my husband’s job pays for our healthcare, and no kids. Maybe I bought a house or my two year old Lexus because I am “smart with saving money”, or maybe it’s because I happened to get lucky with my set of financial circumstances.

I’ve also got a friend who is excited to buy an 11 year old car in cash, and I’ve got another friend who is excited because she paid off her house.

Just like my own accomplishments are big feats for myself…. your accomplishments are the same for you, even if it’s much bigger or smaller than mine.

Learn to understand that not everyone has the same opportunity or set of circumstances as you. Be forgiving, but hungry for self growth. Be humble, and pull EVERYONE up…not just those nearest you.

But more important, just like you do not want people to look down on you… do not forget that you do not need to look down on those around you, either.

Have humility as you build financially.