“Good enough” has been a watch word in my family for years. When I was a child, I knew that “no” meant “no” and whining and crying wasn’t going to get me anywhere. I grew up with “good enough,” and you know what? Good enough IS good enough.
My dad was always one to “improve” things. His lawn mower was a good one, but he felt it needed some ‘adjustments.’ So he duct-taped a huge piece of strong plastic on it so that the grass clippings wouldn’t gum up the blades. It looked funny, but it did the job and it was good enough.
When I was old enough to go to proms at school, I had one “fancy” dress that my mom bought for me for my first prom. As there was a prom each year, I felt I couldn’t wear that same dress again. But I had a friend whose sister was a wizard at sewing clothes. Her prom dresses were fabulous, and she made a new one each year. She had me try on one of her creations, a beautiful pink dress with a deep pink velvet sash. Luckily, it fit me perfectly—it was absolutely good enough for my next prom.
When I was old enough to drive, Mom cashed in an insurance policy she had bought when I was a baby. It was enough to pay for my very first car, a pre-owned yellow Honda with standard steering. Dad had taught me how to drive “stick,” and I loved it. This, my first car, was wonderfully good enough.
Having grown up with the “good enough” value system, I saved a lot of time and money. We Yankees tend to be a bit on the tight-fisted side, as we grew up with the adage: “use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without.”
When I left home and started working, I met a lot of people who loved to use credit cards so that they could have what they wanted right now and pay later. I am certainly not condemning them; I fell into the same ‘buy now and pay later’ trap. I learned the hard way that it’s a lot easier to save up and then buy. Once I cleared all my debt, I went right back into the “good enough” mode I grew up with. I didn’t make that mistake again, and, looking back, it was a good but expensive lesson.