I’m Done Asking for Permission


asking for permission

Photo by Ben White

“Forty years I’ve been asking for permission to piss. I can’t squeeze a drop without say-so.” This quote by Red, portrayed by Morgan Freeman in The Shawshank Redemption, captured it perfectly: throughout our lives, we are constantly asking for permission. It never ends.

Well, one day, I decided to make a change: I was done asking for permission. If I wanted something, and if I could afford it—on my own, without having to ask—I’d buy it. And if I couldn’t afford it, I wouldn’t.

It may sound unbelievable, but you too can embrace this mindset in your own life. Let me give you an example.

You and your lovely spouse are watching TV when you notice the big, beautiful house the main characters live in. You have the great idea that it’s time for you to move, but purchasing that dream house outright isn’t feasible. So, you consider applying for a mortgage to afford it.

Seems like a good plan, right? Yet, here’s the hitch: opting for a loan means seeking permission to repay the bank (with interest) over the next 15 or 30 years. Debt, well, debt sucks.

How would I approach this situation? If I don’t have the money upfront—and if I’m really done asking for permission—I just won’t buy it. It takes willpower, but I know that the benefits of living within my means far outweigh the cost of taking out that loan.

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