ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Can't Afford It? An Excuse We All Make When We Don't Really Want Something.

Updated on July 25, 2010

Or do I just not want it?

As the recession continues to tighten its grip, some people remain unaffected while, tragically, others struggle just to keep their lives together. And then there are those of us in the middle, who aren't yet desperate but who have to be careful. We've had to realize that we can't have everything but have to prioritise, deciding what to do without in order to get something more important.

My maternal grandmother would have approved of that. She used to say that being able to have everything would turn you into a bad person just as surely as not being able to have anything. She may have been right. She was a smart lady.

So what's my point?

In common with, I'm sure, all dentists, in recent months I've had a lot of patients tell me they would love to have x,y or z done but they can't afford it at the moment. Now I don't know the state of those people's finances and I certainly wouldn't want to pry in that area, but something struck me about the reasons two of them gave me for not going ahead with treatment that would benefit them enormously:

"I can't afford that right now because I've just bought a new Merc."
"I can't afford that because I'm going to buy a 46 inch HD telly."

Both of these statements tell me that these two could afford the treatment offered - and more - if it were a priority for them. But it isn't. A new car or a better TV is more important to them than their smiles. Fair enough. I have no problem with that. Each individual has to make the decisions that are right for them and for their families.

The important point is that we should take responsibility for making those decisions. There are two questions we have to ask ourselves:

1. Do I really want this?

If the answer is "no", that's okay. Decision made. Move on.If the answer is "yes", we are faced with the second question

2. How can I afford this? What would I have to do without to make it possible?

But human beings don't like to take responsibility. It's so much easier to blame something outside of ourselves - like the economic state of the world. At times I've found myself wanting to blame the recession for everything from my shaving rash to not being able to find a pair of matching socks in the morning - when both of those things are clearly my fault, for not shaving properly or not putting my socks away with due care when they were washed. Okay so this is an extreme, and not particularly relevant, example but you get my point (and, by the way, my point ISN'T that anybody's financial position is their own fault. This is all about being honest with ourselves about our reasons for doing, or not doing, something.)

Yes it's tough but that's what being an adult is all about, isn't it? Certainly for me (and I know I'm not unique) every day is a constant stream of decisions, some of them straightforward and some almost paralysingly difficult but they all have to be made.

I have friends who embrace the old hippie ethos. They believe their destiny is in the stars and that they should lie back and enjoy the ride because even the bad times are interesting. Good for them - but that's not who I am. I sometimes wish I could be but I'm not and I have to deal with it.

Do you know who you are?

Tom Nolan is a dentist with over 30 years’ experience.

If you found this article useful, you should check out his book

Watch Your Mouth – An Owner’s Manual.

Also available as a download. This book is packed with practical advice and will tell you everything you need to know to keep your mouth healthy, trouble-free and beautiful for the rest of your life.

You can get in touch via Tom's practice: The Dentist in Town.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)