I am a big supporter of caffeine in general. When you have a long day ahead of you at work, or a long night of studying still to go, sometimes you just need that extra kick to get you through. Caffeine helps you focus, increases your working memory, it improves reaction time and logical memory. It helps reduce error when driving, and as research grows we have learned about many health benefits for a regular caffeine consumer.
What we don’t stop to consider though, is the immense amount of money each of us spends on caffeine every single day. It may seem like a mere two dollars here or 5 dollars there, but that adds up very quickly. Caffeine is addictive, and the more you drink it, the higher the quantity needed in order to produce the same effects. Therefore, you go from drinking one a day to two a day very quickly.
Let’s be honest here, millennial’s are a generation of coffee addicts. In fact, studies are now coming out saying that we are spending more money on coffee than we are putting towards our retirement. This issue is significantly greater in women than in men. Although seemingly minor while we are in our twenties, these decisions will come back to haunt us soon enough.
Coffee is a short term solution to a long term problem. Humans require sleep, proper nutrients, sufficient amounts of water and food, and instead of taking the time to make sure we have this, we drink a cup of coffee. It’s our way of cheating the system; it gives us energy right when we need it and keeps us going long past our body’s breaking point. The need for caffeine only exists when we don’t give our body the things it needs.
Life is busy, we all know that. Sometimes we just don’t have time to cook a good meal or sleep a full eight hours. The issue is, that this swiftly turns into a vicious cycle. The more money you spend on coffee, the less you have, and therefore, the more you need to work to gain money and the more tired you become, making your need for coffee higher. Not to mention, the less money you save for retirement, the more years you will have to spend working and inevitably continuing to drink coffee.
Next time you are tired and your day isn’t nearly over, try to consider other options. Have you eaten enough? Have you eaten enough items that contain protein and iron to give you energy? Have you had enough water? When can you slot out time to rest or catch up on sleep? The sooner you get yourself into a routine that doesn’t rely on coffee, the sooner you’ll find you don’t need it.
Save your money for what matters, for the things you need, not the things you want. It may seem like three dollars isn’t much, but if you spend 3 dollars, 5 days a week, for 52 weeks a year, you will have spent 780 dollars on coffee alone annually.
For a generation that prides itself on strength, efficiency and independence, our coffee addiction seemingly goes against everything we stand for. We rely on it, we lack independence and financial stability partly because of it, and our futures are absolutely being negatively affected by it. Our generation spends significantly more time being formally educated than any generation to precede us, so educate yourself on the realities of your habits. Educate yourself on the ways your coffee addiction is affecting you.
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