What is Wrong with Being Frugal?
By Amobi Okugo \\\ MLS midfielder and founder of Frugal Athlete
What's so wrong with being frugal? I’ll tell you what’s wrong!!
It means you are cheap. It means you have “alligator arms” and never want to reach into your pocket to pay for anything. It means you would rather get something for free or a discount than ever paying top dollar.
You know Jason Pitts from “The Game” or Julius, Chris Rock’s father in “Everybody Hates Chris?” That's you!!
Especially in the athlete world, being FRUGAL is considered weird and out of place. To fellow teammates and friends, you are the rich guy that can provide for not only yourself, but anyone else as well. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been made fun of for some of the FRUGAL decisions I’ve made. Granted, I even laugh at myself for some of them, too. For all the benefits and privileges that come with being a professional athlete, why would an athlete feel the need to be FRUGAL or even choose to live a FRUGAL life?
Well, I’ll give you two reasons:
1. Money doesn’t grow on trees
2. Athletic careers don’t last forever
By definition, FRUGAL means:
Economical in use or expenditure; prudently saving or sparing; not wasteful.
I don’t know about you, but to me, that seems like the right approach when dealing with your own money. Having a FRUGAL approach doesn’t solely mean being a penny pincher. Being FRUGAL can describe how you approach a number of different economic decisions. Whether it’s investing, budgeting, spending, hiring an individual to work for you, dealing with contracts, etc., being FRUGAL is essentially just being smart and informed about how you handle your finances.
As an athlete, I find it strange that I’m more exposed to the unfortunate stories of athletes losing their wealth compared to savvy athletes and the smart business decisions they make or have made. Why is it so easy to stumble upon an article where an athlete got conned out of millions of dollars by a sketchy financial manager or watch a whole 30 for 30 ESPN documentary called “Broke” about athletes and the wrong financial decisions they made? How come it is looked on as weird and unique when a guy like Lebron James doesn’t like to pay extra money for the data on his phone bill or Kawhi Leonard still uses the car he owns from his college days?
I would definitely consider myself FRUGAL. And even for as FRUGAL as I claim and try to be, there are always other tips and tidbits I can learn and use for my own personal growth. I’ve always been curious to know what other people, athletes especially, do to help in their quest for financial freedom.
That is one of the main reasons why I decided to start this site, to share positive outcomes and insight into different athletes’ approaches to a FRUGAL lifestyle. Hopefully through more information, and success stories, we can change the conception and convince everyone that being FRUGAL may not be so wrong after all.