Advice on Overcoming Financial Adversity and Ignoring Negative Comments

Dave Ramsey often tells people on his radio show they’ll be considered weird when they share they’re living on a budget.   In fact, your friends might think something is wrong.  ”Oh, he has a spending problem, so he’s on a budget to fix matters.” Or, your circle of friends might even consider it strange you choose to drive your car until the wheels fall off versus buying a shiny new one each year.  Sometimes the comments might turn negative and can be hurtful.  This is just one type of financial adversity you might encounter, but you have to stay motivated and look past it.  Remember, your hard work is for a worthy goal of having some financial peace in your life.

I was recently interviewed on Laura Rowley’s show titled Money and Happiness.  This aired on’s Daily Finance. Click here to view the video on Daily Finance.

Financial AdversityIn this interview I shared some of the tips Tracy and I used to get to the point that we were able to live off my teacher’s salary.  I thought I did a pretty good job and did not think I would offend many people since all I was trying to do was help others.  Well, from some of the comments, you would have thought I was preaching about committing the worst crime imaginable.

Here is a sampling of some of the comments this story received:

I’m sure those people in the apartment with 2 or 3 children were saying, “Boy, I’m glad we don’t have a house with a couple of bathrooms and bedrooms”.   And I bet they never argue over who gets the car. This is disguised Jimmy Carter socialism, aka Give up the American dream, you’ll be happy with less. He’s not happy with less, he just needs a excuse for not succeeding. If his books a big hit, 5 will get you 10 he’ll be moving on up to the big house.

I guess that you just stay on a particular budget. It doesn’t seem like it is a happy or satisfying way to live a life.

Who has a mortgage of only 1000 per month including utilities? Not in Va.! Unless this guy is living in some sort of ghetto, could you live on the money he is talking about. I spend over 1000 a month in food for three people and sometimes more. Where is the car payment, other living expenses, etc. I hope this guy’s car never breaks down. At the income level he is talking about, his car can’t be new. Completely unrealistic! Where is clothes for his kids? 40K a year translates to 3333 per month before taxes. Deduct 25% for adverage taxes and that amount is only 2500 per month. You are not supporting kids, a stay at home mom, having health insurance and going on vacation on 2500 per month!

Wow – huh?  The main reason for this post is to encourage those of you that are making a change to continue in that direction, ignore what others have to say when it’s negative and overcome financial adversity!

My quote on One Money Design is “To avoid criticism do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.”   The reason I chose this is because of some of the comments.  Whenever you are doing something positive in your life there will be others that might put you down to make themselves feel better.  It is much easier to criticize others rather than make a change in your own life.

As you make changes in your life to improve your finances, there will probably be people that make fun of you, as Dave Ramsey warns.  In the interview above, the host and I did not say anything offensive and were just trying to help others.  As you can see by the comments, that is not the way some took it.  Don’t give up because of others’ views.  Keep working hard to manage your money wisely and it will make a difference for you in the future!

About Danny Kofke

Danny Kofke is currently a special education teacher and author of “How To Survive (and perhaps thrive) On A Teacher’s Salary.” His frugality has enabled him to pursue a job he is passionate about and, at the same time, support a family of four on his salary alone.

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  • Donna

    Wow, attacked for trying to help others? I am taken aback at such emotional negative responses. I have lived frugally all my life. Now my home is almost paid for, I drive a car with 196,000 miles (my husband’s has 169,000) and we have both an emergency fund and a car replacement fund. What we don’t have are iphones, ipads or the latest anything. It is all about choices. I use coupons religiously and do not buy anything on a whim. We eat out once a week at a local burger joint. I am a homemaker and my husband is a college professor at a two year school. Please keep telling it like it is no matter what a few say. There are many of us that are listening!

  • Rob

    I just read all the comments on the original video, and wow, what a cesspit of negativity. Good on you for showing it can be done.

  • XJ

    While some of the comments were pretty venomous and not warranted, the people who said things like “Who has a mortgage of only 1000 per month including utilities? Not in Va.! Unless this guy is living in some sort of ghetto, could you live on the money he is talking about.” do have a point

    When I lived in SoCal, I lived in a 2-bedroom with my hubby in a bad area of town. There was a crack hotel right across the street, police and ambulance sirens blared at all hours of the night, and a hostage situation happened just a few blocks down from our place at the Food-For-Less. In other words, we were in a BAD area of town, because that was all we could afford. How much was rent in this beat-up nasty area of town? $1,200 a month. That’s $200 more for rent for a ratty apartment in SoCal vs. the mortgage for your gorgeous house in Georgia.

    So the area/state that you live in really does matter when it comes to stretching your dollars. $40,000 a year will NOT sustain a family in most of SoCal or San Fransisco or New York, unless you’re all crammed into a small apartment in a nasty area of town where you have to fear for your life (I was so glad to be out of SoCal when I finally was able to move).