Saturday, December 6, 2008


I'm not one to make myself stand out. The idea of "tooting my own horn" in front of other people makes me feel uncomfortable. That is why only my husband and other bloggers knows about this blog. I'm working on stretching my comfort zone.

I work with a number of people who are very versed in announcing every single event in their lives as the most significant that could possibly be happening. That behaviour is a turn off for me though it has served as a mirror revealing my most opposite stance.

Rallying for public support of my ideas has not been where I've spent my life energy. Perhaps I am afraid of rejection. Perhaps I'm too busy living and building to worry about it.

So on the surface, I probably give off an intensely serious energy that I'm all business, especially at work. The pockets of people I interact with as friends, colleagues, bloggers or others I meet through my extra curricular activities would get to see the different facets of me.

What got me onto this topic were a few recent comments.

At the office, we've had a number of new staff start and they are just getting to know everyone and their practice style. One of them offered me a ride home the other night and commented that she has seen me walk home and she goes right by there.

I told her thanks very much, but I enjoy walking. The look of pity was unmistakable. It never occurred to me that walking was something to be pitied. Perhaps she thought I did not own a car. Even if that were the case (I'm working on it...), I would not think to pity someone because they didn't own a set of wheels either.

Those who know about our leisure lifestyle (my husbands colleagues) find it really strange that we would opt for no cable, cell phone plan or satellite service. It seems to create a lifestyle disconnect for them.

Perhaps in order to own vacation properties and a nice house means I have to have all the "rest" of the "normal" stuff as a prerequisite to the "bigger dream"? Seeing someone doing it any other way would not make sense? Or is it simply that no one does anything they feel is wrong? So one feels challenged when faced with difference?

A coworker of my husband's (someone I've never met) asked him if I had a busy practice. D answered yes, it is fairly busy. She is working the hours she wants (part time) and makes enough to support our lifestyle. She replied that she would have a problem going to a health care practitioner who drove an old car like mine (1997).

Her dentist's parking lot is apparently littered with Porsches, Audis and BMW's owned by the group of dentists. Until now, I had never considered what cars my health care practitioners drove. If anything, I would think a bigger, glitzier place would mean higher fees to pay for higher rent and lifestyle of the practitioners!

Normally, I do not think about how I am perceived by those who do or do not know me. I tend to be most comfortable operating in stealth mode. I don't flaunt what recognition I do get.

When faced with differing views, I just look up temporarily from what I am doing, register the comment, get amused by the interpretation (most of the time) and continue on my way.

Have you experienced other people's resistance to your way of life? If so, how did you handle t?

Laura at Move to Portugal wrote a guest post about how she didn't tell anyone about their plan to pay off the mortgage quickly in order to realize their dream.


  1. Hi and thank you for the link :)

    Great post. I now flaunt the fact that I'm fairly's funny to see peoples reactions. When I'm sitting on the beach with my disc man (not an ipod) I'll have the last laugh :)

  2. I also keep the blog a secret from everyone I know (except my husband). I find it easier to share my thoughts with other bloggers who I know are like-minded. Sharing such things with other people has caused a few issues in the past.

    When I was younger and the property market was in a slump, I went on a buying spree. I was judged quite harshly by older people who counseled that at my age I should be spending my money and having a good time. Needless to say, when the property market started to boom the following year, I was told how lucky I was (like I hadn't sacrificed to get where I was!) and I even received some resentment for my foresight.

    I've also been away on a work trip to Hawaii with people who called me cheap because I wasn't spending all my money on fine dining and expensive drinks. Instead I used the money to take a day trip to Big Island Volcanoes. No-one else could afford to join me.

    It's frustrating at times, but reading everyone else's blogs steels my resolve to stick to this path that I know is right for me.

  3. It is nice to have found a community of like-minded, financially-responsible, goal-focused people. No such community exists for me in my real life.

    We are a minority, that is for sure, but our voice is getting stronger. I don't preach frugality, but I don't lie about our choices, either.

    I also blog anonymously (my husband knows about the blog) because I fear the judgement and ridicule (for my family's sake) that blogging could invite.

  4. Wow, glad to read from the other comments that I'm not alone in wanting to blog for strangers and not people I know! Lots of my friends don't even know about my blog, and I like it fine that way.

    Back to the post, I stopped driving a couple of years ago, because I enjoy walking and sitting on a bus or train. Sometimes people react with surprise that I've chosen this lifestyle. Only those who have tried it understand how carefree one can be without a car. So now when people pity me, I pity them right back!

    Thanks for sharing your experience, Middle Way. It's nice to know I'm not alone.


  5. @ Laura -- Disc man!! I love it! You will get the last laugh.

    @ living my rich life, Money Minder and Daphne --

    Isn't it crazy that the ones who ought to be the most supportive are frequently not? What is with that?

    I happen to like it when other people succeed. I get inspired by them. Why wouldn't I? If they are willing to chose well and come out on top, they ought to be commended.

    Too bad people do not follow the

    "If you cannot say anything kind, then don't bother saying anything at all" idea

    or the

    "You don't have to do what I do but let me know if you are going to work with me or against me -- at least I'll know what to expect"

    There is nothing worse than to be blindsided by (ignorant, jealous, resentful...insert adjective here) people.