The American Dream Re-mastered – The New Normal?
The phrase “new normal” has been making the rounds in articles, posts, and blogs regarding the current economy. These new normals are things many F-word (The NEW F-Word) people have been doing for a long time. And whether you’re a hardcore minimalist, practice part-time frugality, or are a temporary tightwad, the growing trend is changing the definition of “The American Dream”.
“The American Dream is a national ethos of the United States in which freedom includes a promise of prosperity and success. In the American Dream, first expressed by James T. Adams in 1931, citizens of every rank feel that they can achieve a “better, richer, and happier life.” The idea of the American Dream is rooted in the second sentence of the Declaration of Independence which states that “all men are created equal” and that they are “endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable Rights” including “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. Home ownership is sometimes used as a proxy for achieving the promised prosperity; ownership has been a status symbol separating the middle classes from the poor.” – From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (emphasis added)
A better, richer, and happier life. Somewhere along the way, I think we, as a society, have lost sight of what truly defines a better, richer, and happier life. Is it really about earning more money, in order to live in a bigger house, drive a fancier car, or ordering super-sized meals, owing more things? Isn’t it ironic that the American Dream has become synonymous with incurring a 15-30 year debt?! I don’t believe that is what our Founding Fathers had in mind.
The American Dream Re-mastered (TADR….yeah I made that up. Kind of sounds like Tada!) is a truer course to a better, richer, happier life. For some, TADR is a way to survive a layoff, a downsized employment or to pay off a looming, incurred debt. For others, TADR is a voluntary choice. The news is full of people who are making choices to live TADR by eliminating their debt (step 1: STOP SPENDING $$, and start tracking your expenses right now!), reducing personal possessions that are unnecessary (the average American family owns 2.7 television sets, and 34 electronic devices, and don’t get me started on the number of shoes the average American woman owns!), and “right-sizing” their lives by reducing living costs (smaller homes, renting vs. owning, living closer to work to eliminate extra vehicles, ditching the cable, cooking at home).
And guess what?? These peeps are living a better, richer, happier life! Now they have more time to spend with family and friends, more time to pursue new experiences and interests, and believe it or not, some of these people are making a living that supports their lifestyle, in some cases their families, by doing what they LOVE.
Some of the best examples of people living TADR are:
The American Dream – Re-mastered….
Are you living The American Dream Re-mastered? What does the American Dream look like for you?