Why Do I Live Downtown Again?

london in the evening

Sometimes I think I’m a little crazy.  It affects my social life. I am cheap. I live downtown, but I don’t like to go out that much because it’s expensive.  I don’t want to because going out and spending £10 per drink is dumb. I can’t justify spending £40-100 in one night because “what if I have to quit my job? What if I get fired? What if I can’t find a job?” I might need the £15 from that drink to buy me a few meals at the local fast food place. I don’t go to nice places to eat because fast food is cheaper and spending £40 on a meal is pointless when you’re getting the same amount of calories that you could get for £4 someplace else.

I sold my car partly because I live downtown and take public transit everywhere, and partly because even though my car insurance rates were very good it was still more money that I was spending.  Plus, let’s be honest, driving anywhere downtown sucks anyway, and once you get wherever you’re going you either have to spend 20 minutes looking for parking or you have to pay for parking in a lot or garage.  More money.

I should note, however, that when someone invites you to go someplace, and you say “sorry, I can’t afford it,” you don’t usually get any guff for it because most people are so in debt that they assume you really can’t afford it, either (altho that doesn’t stop them from doing it). I say “I can’t afford it” because I don’t want to say “I don’t want to waste my money on that.”

Some of my friends give me a hard time, but I can’t help but think “whatever.” Some of my friends my age make £50-90k per year (which I am super jealous of) and they party like rockstars, yet they only have a few thousand saved up. “What if you lose your job?” I want to ask them. “You’ll be screwed because you have no savings.” And then I imagine myself in that position and I become terrified… like literally, I have a mini-anxiety attack.

Now normally I think it’s good to be frugal and concerned about your finances, but I think it’s consuming me to the point that it’s unhealthy. Part of the reason I have a decent amount of saving built up at this point is because I don’t really spend a lot of money on stuff, anyway.

How do I un-consume myself with money without taking the complete opposite approach and not just start spending and getting to debt, etc. I know “you only live once” so people are going to tell me to spend more and have fun, but when if after I spend it, I need it, and I don’t have it because I wasted it away on £100 bar tabs?