I was recently looking over my expense categories on my credit card’s online dashboard. I noticed quite a lot of my expenses were coming from the ‘dining and entertainment’ category. I thought it strange since I nearly always make my own food and I’m quite clever about finding ways to have fun without spending tons of money.
I opened up the category and it wasn’t wrong. I had been spending a good percentage on food and entertainment. I realized these expenses were all from dates. None of these relationships stuck – that’s probably why I forgot about the time I went to the restaurant called ‘Modern Love.’
**This post was written by Will Lipovsky, one of our excellent staff writers here at Life And My Finances. Enjoy!**
Ever Think of Dates As Investments?
Since I really had been spending a decent amount of money on dates, I started to second guess their value. That’s what all frugal people do when they see expenses. For the most part, I actually don’t even enjoy restaurants. I eat really, really healthy so there are very few restaurants in Nebraska that serve my kind of food. Going to movies isn’t that important to me. Getting ice cream out at 10 PM isn’t something I usually do alone either.
But… I realized that going on dates is sort of like investing. You must spend some money upfront in order to get a desired outcome greater than your present situation. With dating… the investment potential is astronomical! Ever think of dates as investments? You may not have considered it, but they can be the best investment on the planet.
Dates can lead to a relationship which can lead to marriage. And besides the happiness factor (which is the greatest reason to get in a relationship), getting married can be quite a boost financially. It’s like having a roommate for life. Hello two incomes but not having expenses double. The government wants you to get married so they treat it favorably as well. I think it’s because a stable populous is a healthy and productive populous. It’s a pretty sweet deal.
A Gauge of Spending and Interest
I also don’t believe dating should really add a lot of fat to your budget. Because if you would really consider being in a relationship with this person, you both should enjoy just about the same things. Your spending habits should also be about the same. So a date where you go to the zoo, let’s say, should actually be fun for both of you. It should be something you’re happy to spend your money on anyway. I think this point of view applies to all good investments. Billionaire Richard Branson emphasizes this in his book, The Virgin Way: Everything I Know About Leadership. He says that all of the Virgin companies exist because he is genuinely interested in the industry/niche.
What this means is that if you begin to resent the money you’ve spent on dates, you’re not dating the right people. You’re not investing your time and money in the right man/woman. So if dating even seems like an annoying expense, it’s time to call it quits.
I learned this the hard way. I dated a girl who I stopped liking after a few months but didn’t really realize it. We didn’t really enjoy any of the same things. This meant trips to places I really didn’t want to go to. And when we would see movies, it seemed like only one of us would like the movie. It didn’t work. It wasn’t a good investment. I was getting very little happiness. Sometimes you have to cut your losses and walk away.
Yes, yes, I know. Talking about money and relationships is taboo as heck. But it’s something we all think about, I’m just writing about it.
At the end of the day, all that matters are the people you love. That should always be your focus – finding the person who you will love most. It’s the ‘happily ever after’ part that matters most. Just do yourself a favor and only invest in relationships that are going places.
Life and finances always run parallel.
My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.